“You don’t have to ‘feel thin’ to have thin privilege,” tweeted author and lingerie expert Cora Harrington. “Thinness isn’t a feeling. If other people perceive you as thin, you are thin.” Her tweet has been retweeted nearly 5,000 times and has 22,000 likes. This idea of “thin privilege” — which Harrington says means that “societal discrimination and prejudice does not target you” and “your weight/body type are seen as ‘normal’” — is part of the concept of “body positivity.” Which is ironic, since this tweet certainly seems to be calling people out for having a certain body type.
Hey, you don’t have to “feel thin” to have thin privilege.
Thinness isn’t a feeling. If other people perceive you as thin, you are thin. If you are able to walk into any clothing store and expect to see a wide range of options in your size, you are thin.
— Cora Harrington (@lingerie_addict) July 22, 2018
This notion of people “checking” their “privilege” is one of the main tenets of the SJW mindset. In order to not make others feel bad about aspects of themselves which they may not be able — or want — to change, other people need to feel bad about aspects of themselves which they may not be able — or want — to change. Logic: it’s not an SJW strong suit. Add to this Harrington’s idea that it’s the perceptions of others that define you, not the way you represent yourself, and you’ve got a perfect storm of complete and utter hypocrisy.
Some, on Twitter, pushed back against Harrington’s comments. Karina Michelle asked, “How about if you work hard to be, not thin, but in shape, every single day?” pointing out that “the effort it takes is absolutely nuts. The hard work needed doesn’t scream privilege to me.” We Miss Harry tweeted, “people have insecurities with how skinny they are, we shame people for being ‘too thin’, there’s no privilege about this.” Leah said, “Do not, I repeat, do not make me feel bad because I am thin. I exercise every day to stay thin. This isn’t a privilege. I’ve earned it.”
How about if you work hard to be, not thin, but in shape, every single day? I mean the effort it takes is absolutely nuts. The hard work needed doesn’t scream privilege to me.
— Karina Michelle (@okarinamichelle) July 23, 2018
people have insecurities with how skinny they are, we shame people for being "too thin", there's no privilege about this
— we miss harry (@cherrylouisx) July 23, 2018
Do not, I repeat, do not make me feel bad because I am thin. I exercise every day to stay thin. This isn't a privilege. I've earned it.
— Leah (@blue4t) July 23, 2018
But there were plenty of SJWs coming to Harrington’s defense, explaining that, no, if you’re thin then you do deserve to feel bad about it. “Body positivity,” apparently, only applies to fat people. Jenn tweeted “Thin people interjecting themselves into this conversation due to a single irregular body part (narrow feet, odd breast size…) need to STOP.” French Fries Are A Food Group said, “The comments to this just remind me of how annoying privileged people always are ‘but I have struggles tooooooooooo’ blah.” Adults Who Count Followers scoffs, “Cue to thin girls saying that they were once told to eat more and therefore they are also victims.”
1) Thin people interjecting themselves into this conversation due to a single irregular body part (narrow feet, odd breast size…) need to STOP. When we say, "Big Humans Are Not Treated With Dignity", you don't need to yell "WhatAboutMe". If you're under a size 16, just listen.
— Jenn (@8675309Carson) July 23, 2018
The comments to this just remind me of how annoying privileged people always are "but I have struggles tooooooooooo" blah.
— Maverik Key (@QueerAtWork) July 23, 2018
Cue to thin girls saying that they were once told to eat more and therefore they are also victims.
— Minkoff (@Silvia28813545) July 23, 2018
In this game, apparently, the victim-y-est victim is the winner. For a group claiming to be working toward “justice” “empowerment” and “equality,” SJWs sure do love being victims. I mean, even if being overweight is an immutable trait — which is highly debatable — how is that thin people’s fault? Why should thin people have to “check their privilege” simply because fat people feel bad about being fat? Can’t we treat all sizes of people with dignity and respect? The answer, it would seem, is no.
Harrington’s comment that “if other people perceive you as thin, you are thin” is particularly problematic. It implies that people’s perceptions of reality hold more weight than reality itself. But not just any people. Only SJWs. Because Harrington would, presumably, chastise someone for saying, for example, that a trans man was actually a woman because that person perceived him to be a woman. In that case, we must abide by the assertion of the person being perceived. But if I don’t consider myself thin, but you think I am, then I must check my “thin privilege.” In an SJW world, logic and facts must cede precedence to ideology and blame.
That, more than anything else, is what I find so alarming about Harrington’s tweet and the attention and support it has received. Regardless of whether the deck is stacked against fat people — or whose fault that is — the idea that a group of people with a set ideology should hold the sole power to define and shame other people reeks of oppression. And when it’s done in the name of liberation and equality, it reeks of tyranny. And that, I hope we can all agree, is not worth fighting for.