Most readers are likely familiar with the phrase, “sticks and stones may break my bones, but words may never hurt me.” Although quite a cliché today, the expression is becoming increasingly vital, especially for our youth and those in academia who seem hypersensitive to reality.
According to a recent study published in Fat Studies: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Body Weight and Society, college classroom desks perpetuate “thin privilege and fat hatred.” The experiment was conducted by Dr. Heather Brown, director of a research institute at the University of North Carolina-Charlotte.
The Battle of the Bulge
Dr. Brown claims that the pieces of furniture foster hostility towards overweight females. What is the reasoning behind her statements? The desks do not offer enough room, causing the stomachs of pupils to bulge onto the surface and cause embarrassment, hindering the colleagues’ potentials to concentrate during their courses.
One collegegoer expressed in an interview with Dr. Brown on the matter:
“I can’t help thinking about it, and then it would turn into, like, ‘Maybe if I lose ten pounds then I wouldn’t look so fat in this desk.”
In all honesty, yes, if the student lost ten pounds, she would seem thinner – and perhaps she should work to lose the weight. Dr. Brown’s conclusions come at a time when the U.S. is facing an obesity epidemic, as reported by Liberty Nation. Excess fat may lead to nervous system inflammation, depression, steatohepatitis (NAFLD) and other serious maladies. The piece of furniture is not at fault, and sane individuals should not feel offense from the urgency of the health crisis.
Healthy Diet Healthy Mind
Furthermore, according to the CDC, those who eat nutritiously and participate in an active lifestyle are more likely to experience enhanced cognitive functioning, leading to better school grades. Adequate diet and exercise are crucial for the success of university students, as found by multiple studies.
Primarily as an executive director of research, Dr. Brown should educate on the effects that obesity may pose to society. However, she has decided to preach that anything exposing the crisis perpetuates “thin privilege.” As an advanced nation, we should encourage beneficial routines, not promote the rejection of reality? Many in academia seem to be turning to supporting feelings over truth, hindering scientific and societal progress.
Presenting a Positive Vision
Dr. Brown is now calling for universities across the U.S. to put an end to the “discrimination,” by installing variously sized chairs and tables in the classrooms. She warns, however, that the renovation could lead to harming self-esteem by causing heavy students to feel as what they are: overweight.
We must encourage healthy lifestyles to promote the progress of our great nation. Regardless of whether one is obese or anorexic, scientists should retain objectivity and correct the harmful behaviors, as they are ones who many Americans look to for guidance and encouragement on critical daily decisions.