At RunwayRiot, we talk a lot about the idiots who just can’t keep their disgusting opinions on women’s bodies to themselves. It’s rare to see a day when a celeb isn’t lashing out at a hater who told her she looked like a hippo or commented on her assumed lack of eating habits. Obviously body shaming is nothing new, but it’s a hot topic right now that people are really speaking out about.
With that is also the idea that we should “end” body shaming. Just the other day, we wrote about the #TakeTheOath challenge that has that very goal in mind. People routinely fight back against body shaming by posting body positive selfies. Articles frame it as something that could eventually be stopped like Voldemort.
Obviously, the day that body shaming ended would be a day more joyous than Beyonce’s next album release. It’s something I’ve hoped for after reading so many stories about women who’ve been bullied for being a certain size or just seeing the nonsense women in the public eye have to put up with. People who WOULDN’T be excited for that day are probably troubled and living in their parents’ basements.
But I realized it’s naive of me to think that day will ever come. Unfortunately, no body will ever be perfect in the eyes of everybody. There will always be someone, somewhere who will suggest you sign yourself up for a makeover show. Sure, it would be awesome to drill it in every single brain of nitwits that all bodies are beautiful, but the sad reality is that it’ll never stick.
It’s too engrained in our culture to believe that bodies are up for comment and that there are right and wrong ways of being a woman. That certain bodies are more attractive than others. Magazines and even entire television networks tell us it’s ideal to look like a Victoria’s Secret Angel. Weight loss ads are shoved in our face at every corner we turn. And with the sewer that is the internet, there will always be people who won’t be afraid to throw out a disgusting comment and then run away or sit back and watch the lava spew. Notably, selfie queen Kim Kardashian said “bye” to someone who called her a “fat b*tch” on Twitter, and people are still comparing her to Shamu today. But that’s the internet, and that’s also just the way the world works, unfortunately.
I think what we CAN continue to do is to help people get a clue and hope something sticks. When someone says something that sucks, we can and should call them out. Celebrities should continue to fight back against trolls and say, hey, go fall into an alligator pit. We can continue to spread the revolutionary idea that there isn’t one ideal body type. That all bodies are beautiful regardless of what shape, size, or color they are.
But we shouldn’t continue to be surprised when people reject that idea, and we shouldn’t be discouraged when body shaming comments continue to be sling-shotted out on Twitter (because they will be) because that’s just wasted energy. And we need all the good energy we can get in this sometimes sucky world.