Strong4Life Shame Campaign – How You Can Help

I’ve posted a bit about the Strong4Life ad campaign shaming fat children for being fat.  I’ve posted on their facebook page over and over in the past month, calling them out on their wrong headed assumption that the best way to deal with the “child obesity problem” is to shame the kids and parents.  I, and others, have posted peer reviewed study after peer reviewed study, to receive more and more contempt from Strong4Life and their supporters.  (In one recent comment, Strong4Life stated that we needed to not use studies from 2005-2008 that we found on bigfatfacts.com — or some such non-existent website, totally ignoring that we’ve actually been using studies from all over the place, published in such auspicious publications as the JAMA and other medical journals, among other things.)

While we continue to engage on their facebook page, Shannon at Fierce, Freethinking Fatties has been writing well researched post after well researched post on the absurdity of what Strong4Life claims.  Their lack of documentation that “75% of parents in GA don’t know about the problem”, their inability to even define the “problem” (is the problem “fat children” or is the problem “health concerns”), their usage of healthy child actors without disclosing that the child actors don’t, in fact, have diabetes or whatever.

A bunch of us have adopted “STANDards”.  Marilynn Wann of FAT!SO? came up with an awesome counter to the pictures on the ads of the children.  Called STANDards, these are pictures of awesome people combating the idea that fat people (children and adults) should be humiliated, shamed, bullied, or punished for the way we look.  Go have a look, there’s some very awesome people pictured who have come up with fantastic messages.

Now, Shannon, Marilynn, and Ragen Chastain at Dances With Fat have joined together to start a media blitz of their own.  The goal is to put up as many billboards in Atlanta as they can afford to counteract the shame-based ads of Strong4Life.  More of Me to Love has generously agreed to match $5000 towards the purchase of one billboard (one billboard costs $10,000 per month).  Part of the matching requirements include that there be 1000 individual donors.

Here’s where you come in.  The first $5000 has already been attained (in less than 24 hours!), however, there’s only been about 200 individual donors.  If we have more than $10,000, the money will go to however many billboards we can afford, and if the overage comes to less than a $10,000 excess, all the extra money will go to posters and multimedia advertising.  Nothing will be kept for personal use.

As Ragen says:

Does $5,000 sound like a lot?  Let’s put some perspective on this number. If each of my followers gave $10, we would raise $21,220 – enough for 2 billboards and a large media campaign with the MOMTL match.  If each visitor to the blog from yesterday donated $10 we would raise $41,680, enough for four billboards and a massive media campaign.  To meet goal we only need $5,000.  We can do this!  And when those billboards go up and as the publicity around them gets our experts into the media talking about the Health at Every Size(r) Approach, we can all be proud.

Please, go donate.  Even $1.00 will help.  Let’s stop this shame based advertisement campaign that targets fat kids and leaves them open for more bullying!

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Please, give what you can!

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