The fact that you believe it is alright to stand up and call some one a "fatty" is a perfect demonstration of how weight discrimination is so popularly excepted in society today. - The issue is NOT that larger size people cannot buy the size clothes that they fit in at A&F - the problem is in the openly biased and size-unfriendly attitude that was exhibited by Mr. Jeffries comment. You do not see Lane Bryant CEO standing up and saying something that is anyway discriminatory, defaming or hurtful to "Normal Sized" people as you put them. The fact that you use the term "Normal Size" people is also another huge indicator of your own weight bias. Please explain to me what makes a "Normal Size Person." Obesity is a disease that over one third of the American Population suffers from. 35% of our country is not only over weight, but obese, so what exactly do you categorize as "Normal" - The problem isn't A&F and the clothes, the problem is weight biased thinking, weight discrimination, and in truth, teenagers are often traumatized by just the sort of things you have said here today with your "Fatty" and "Normal Size" comments when faced with teasing and bullying in school because of their size.
I wanted to come to your page personally and thank you for the piece that you did on Abercrombie and Fitch decision to no longer sell clothes in a size larger than ten.
I heard about this controversy a week or so ago as it exploded on Facebook. I am post-op bariatric surgery patient, a proud member of the Obesity Action Coalition and a proud supporter of the Weight Loss Surgery Foundation of America. When I first heard rumors of the story I was admittedly on the fence on the issue. There was a part of me, looking at it from a business perspective said, well hey, every company has a right to market to their target audience, not every company carries plus sizes, nor do we as a society expect them too, but before I made up my mind on the issue I wanted to take the time to actually read the statement that was made by Mr. Jeffries, CEO of Abercrombie and Fitch.
I JUST arrived home today from a trip to Vegas where I was in the company of several hundred weight loss surgery patients, for the WLSFA's Annual Meet and Greet Fundraiser. The WLSFA is a non-profit organization that raises money for grant recipients for patients whose insurance will not cover bariatric surgery and who cannot afford it themselves. This amazing organization is saving lives for people in the fight against obesity. During the Convention I was just at in Las Vegas, where Carnie Wilson spoke as the WLSFA Ambassador of Hope I had the opportunity to go zip lining with last years WLSFA grant recipient, Darren King. Thanks to the WLSFA Darren was able to have weight loss surgery and has taken his life back from obesity. It was an amazing experience to watch four of my dear friends soar through the sky who a few years ago, wouldn't have even been able to do so before weight loss surgery due to the 250lb capacity on the zip line.
After talking to several people about the issue during the convention I had joined the group of those who feel that the actions of Abercrombie and Fitch were not only extremely weight biased, which let's face it, prejudice against obese individuals is accepted discrimination of society; but that it also sends a message to our youth that they are less than worthy if they weigh too much. Too many people still believe it is alright to make jokes about obese people, to tease them, ridicule them and treat them like second class citizens.
After spending a weekend surrounded by hundreds and hundreds of people that used to be obese, who could now, fit into Abercrombie and Fitch clothes, I can honestly say that not many of us would. Ellen I absolutely LOVE that you stood up to Mike Jeffries and I wanted to ask you if you would consider making "Oh Fitch Please." Ellen T-shirts on your website and perhaps even consider donating a part of the proceeds to the WLSFA. I promise Ellen, we have the type of community that if you did this, would stand behind you loyally and buy these shirts!
I hope you will consider this request. Thank you again for standing up against this topic and for sending the message that beauty isn't about the number on a scale or what size pants you wear, and that weight isn't about being beautiful, it is about being happy and healthy and able to enjoy life.