February 11, 2017

The weight-loss celebrity wants overweight nurses to wear this button.



"I want NHS staff to volunteer to wear it to inspire not just the patient but themselves to take action. I want them to be proud that they are losing weight. I want that communicated to the patient. I think it’s a very fair message."

Amazingly, the words "I'm FAT" are only the 5th most offensive thing about the button.

1. The most offensive thing is that there's a picture of the weight-loss guy on the button. (By wearing a button, you're supposedly saying something about yourself, but this other self in horning in on your self-expression.)

2. The colors are not only atrocious, they seem to assume that overweight nurses are female. If you want people to wear a button at work every day — and I assume this guy mainly wants publicity — you need much less color and a very simple design.

3. The viewer — already assaulted by an ugly button — is ordered to have a particular feeling: "Be inspired." The words are put in curly script and the man is making a magician's "presto" gesture at us. Inspiration doesn't come so easy. At least not in the form this guy purports to deliver. You might be inspired to hate this guy.

4. The message of blunt frankness — "I'm FAT" — is confused by the dubious, uncheckable claim that the button-wearer is in the process of losing it. And "losing it" has a double meaning that absolutely doesn't work. And you might "lose it" — in the get-violent sense — if you also misread with stress on the second "I'm."

46 comments:

mockturtle said...

It screams 'used car dealer'. It's hideous and no one in her/his right mind would wear it.

Curious George said...

"2. The colors are not only atrocious, they seem to assume that overweight nurses are female."

By and large they are. Males nurses are generally gay, and almost always thin.

Curious George said...

"The words are put in curly script and the man is making a magician's "presto" gesture at us."

I'm pretty sure that's the "Drop the bear claw fat-ass" gesture.

Bay Area Guy said...

Fatness means you are eating more than your fair share of the food. Our liberal brothers and sisters can appreciate this type of argument.

Bob Boyd said...

How about requiring NHS staff to wear smart buttons linked to their bathroom scales. If they're losing, the button will smile and have a "-1" or a "-2" or whatever. But if they gain, it will have a flashing red number, a pig face and will emit random grunting and squealing sounds throughout the work day.


tcrosse said...

He's giving that “I picture you sucking my cock’ look.

jaydub said...

The most offensive thing about it is the socialist NHS bureaucracy that ordered it.

HT said...

The photo is meant to soften the blow to the person who wears the button, a distraction. I would bet that the overwhelming majority of overweight/obese nurses are female. I know quite a few male nurses, much less than half are gay.

Fernandinande said...

Carry On
and
Keep Losing It.

AprilApple said...

It all works if you have a gay guy as the sponsor.

mockturtle said...

Bob Boyd suggests: How about requiring NHS staff to wear smart buttons linked to their bathroom scales. If they're losing, the button will smile and have a "-1" or a "-2" or whatever. But if they gain, it will have a flashing red number, a pig face and will emit random grunting and squealing sounds throughout the work day.

LOL! :-D

MisterBuddwing said...

Oh, it's from THE SUN - a newspaper which has a bit of a reputation:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DGscoaUWW2M

Ann Althouse said...

"By and large they are. Males nurses are generally gay, and almost always thin."

Doesn't matter. Setting things up for the sake of the majority is bad. The minority always has reason to feel forgotten or excluded. You shouldn't exacerbate that feeling. And the more you send the message that this is a job for X kind of person, the less non-X people are going to want to enter that field.

And I've seen overweight male nurses. I have no idea who's gay and who isn't. It's not the role of the nurse to tell the patient about his/her sexual orientation.

But if you want to go on stereotypes and claim you know, well, I have a problem with that too.

Phil 3:14 said...

I didn't know Tim Robbins was the weight loss guy.

Sydney said...

I would wear it without the "Be Inspired" on it, even though the colors are bad and the guy looks like a weanie. Even when I am on my thinner side, there are some people who will say (sometimes to a third person who tells me later) - "Who is she to tell me to lose weight? She's fat, too!" These are usually people who easily make more than two of me in weight.

Curious George said...

"Ann Althouse said...
"By and large they are. Males nurses are generally gay, and almost always thin."

Doesn't matter. Setting things up for the sake of the majority is bad. The minority always has reason to feel forgotten or excluded. You shouldn't exacerbate that feeling. And the more you send the message that this is a job for X kind of person, the less non-X people are going to want to enter that field.

And I've seen overweight male nurses. I have no idea who's gay and who isn't. It's not the role of the nurse to tell the patient about his/her sexual orientation.

But if you want to go on stereotypes and claim you know, well, I have a problem with that too."

You mean stereotypes like pink and purple are for girls?

BN said...

I have 2 buttons. One says, "I'm drunk, not stupid." The other says, "I'm stupid, not drunk."

Both are black, white, and gray, and use manly fonts.

BN said...

I'm looking for a button that says, "Well, I have a problem with that too."

Let me know if you know where i can get one of those.

BN said...

Preferably, with pink and purple curly cue lettering.

HT said...

I don’t know at whom the two comments were directed:

“And I've seen overweight male nurses. I have no idea who's gay and who isn't. It's not the role of the nurse to tell the patient about his/her sexual orientation.”

“But if you want to go on stereotypes and claim you know, well, I have a problem with that too.”

...but when I said the overwhelming majority of overweight (well, really, obese, let’s not be dainty about it) are female, I was not weighing in so to speak on the wisdom of such a button nor the fairness of it, but rather was responding to this comment:

“They seem to assume that overweight nurses are female.” Not exclusively so, no; but overwhelmingly so. We can talk about the soundness of the BMI, and the reasons many nurses are way over their ideal weight, that would be a good discussion.

Roughcoat said...

Sometime ago when I was briefly hospitalized for surgery I had two male nurses. They struck me as being ex-cons who were possibly serial killers. They were good at their jobs, however.

glenn said...

5. It's stupid. Stupid beyond belief.

AprilApple said...

I don't think we should promote over-sensitivity.

I think we should laugh more at ourselves and stop making all these "you can't say this, you can't say that" rules. If anything, I think it's healthy to add laughter and lightness to our problems. It might actually help. If it happens to irritate some SJW, all the better.

Sydney said...

The button is a play on that old insult- "I may be fat, but you're ugly. I can diet and lose weight, but you can't change ugly."

HT said...

O and btw, if you are serious in your concern that nursing messages/paraphernalia/images are not gender neutral, you will have a lot to keep you pre-occupied!

Sydney said...

Regarding fat shaming: You can't shame people into making a lifestyle change unless you go to an extreme such as not allowing them in public places (hello, smokers!) It works better if they find motivation within themselves.

RigelDog said...

Readers may be confused--the NHS has nothing to do with this scheme. Weight loss dude would LIKE to have the NHS adopt his hideous button idea. Well, I'd LIKE to have McDonalds invent zero-carb french fries that look and taste like the real deal but haven't had luck getting a major newspaper to write an article to that effect.

Owen said...

I am guessing that somebody got paid a lot of money to design and produce that thing. And people are spending time to hand it out and explain it and monitor its proper wearing. And go on talk shows to defend it.

Meanwhile NHS patients wait on gurneys for proper beds, or die of nosocomial infections, or are told they're too old for a new hip.

Goddess of the Classroom said...

Sharing or inviting personal comments on one's appearance outside a private conversation is tacky and unprofessional. Drawing attention to the nurse in any way is tacky. Coercing people to advertise something not associated with their work is tacky. This is a variation of the Scarlet Letter

Sebastian said...

Should read: "Be inspired. I am shameless. And proud of it."

Ann Althouse said...

"Readers may be confused--the NHS has nothing to do with this scheme."

I know. Nothing about my post pushes that incorrect reading, so why did people make that leap?

buwaya said...

The proper approach is to militarize the NHS, feed everyone rations, and make everyone exercise regularly.

Lost My Cookies said...

Only the blonde ones need to wear the yellow star.

RigelDog said...

Gracious Hostess, I too wonder at the assumptions of a few readers that the NHS has even entertained--let alone adopted--the idea that "fat" nurses should wear this self-promoter's mini-billboards.

Bob Boyd said...

This button idea is just nibbling around the edges the Fat Brit problem.
If they were serious they'd start euthanizing every chubby that checks in to a hospital.

Owen said...

My apologies to the NHS, I thought this guy's scheme was farther advanced than it is. If NHS were foolish enough to adopt it, then my rant would have more force. Although I believe it is still true that NHS is right up there with the VA for failing to meet patient needs. Button or no button.

JaimeRoberto said...

I thought that fat shaming was a bad thing.

jdniner said...

My fitness trainer told me I could be fat and fit. She was right. Psychologists say you are what you tell yourself you are. The subconscious though discards negative qualifiers. It only accept direct nouns. The message to yourself needs to be what you want to be. In the present tense. Saying "I quit smoking" is less effective than saying "I eat celery more now and it satisfies the gap"

jdniner said...

I don't know who the guy is, but the only effectiveness to have his face there is as humor or as an attraction to groupies who absolutely adore him. But why force either on the cadre of cynical humorless nurses out there roaming dark hallways at night.

Static Ping said...

The color scheme is reminiscent of the lid on a pint of ice cream.

Joe said...

Do remember that the NHS is not known to be a bucket of geniuses.

Carol S said...

Nice skewering of the button design!

Fat shaming doesn't work. As someone who has been on the fat-thin-fat ride a few times, I know being obese/morbidly obese is unhealthy already, and I know I look unattractive when I am obese/morbidly obese (even in clothes cut to minimize my size). Other people telling me those things are not telling me anything new.

I'd like to know how long this guy has maintained his weight loss, what his psychological quality of life is, and has he maintained his weight loss through a major life stress event such as a cancer diagnosis, the death of someone close to him, job loss, etc.

The number of comments in the Guardian expressing resentment of obese people was interesting. Socialism breeds resentment.

Carol S said...

I meant to say, "and whether or not he has maintained his weight loss through a major life stress event... ." My grammar area of my brain must have had a glitch.

mockturtle said...

Joe states: Do remember that the NHS is not known to be a bucket of geniuses.

I recall how Randy Shilts wrote of the NHS & the CDC in his book, And the Band Played On, about the AIDS crisis. They were both political and petty.

mockturtle said...

Yes, I know. The above article has nothing to do with the NHS. But since the topic arose....

I've never been fat, nor has anyone in my immediate family, so maybe there is a genetic component involved. But I have tried to lose ten pounds from time to time and know how difficult it can be. If it was 100 lbs., I might just feel like giving up before I started. The main thing that encourages me is results. If I'm dieting and not losing weight fairly consistently, I lose interest. I want something to show for my sacrifice.

Helenhightops said...

Do not suggest this to American nurses.