Thursday, September 29, 2011

Fat jokes

The jokes and snarky jibes have been percolating forever on the social sites but the question has now gone mainstream with ABC asking, "Is Chris Christie Too Fat to be President."

They're not posing it as a health question, which would be a legitimate query. After all, numerous studies show the obese are more suseptible to chronic conditions and life threatening health events. But ABC is posing it a cosmetics issue. As in, can the fat guy win against a fit guy with good hair? Which engenders the usual academic discussions about Kennedy and Nixon on the internets.

As a practical matter, the answer is fat is an obstacle Christie learned to overcome and turn to his advantage. For one thing he's not grossly unattractive in his obesity. He still has good hair. Moreover, he's adopted a Ralph Cramden loudmouth style that endears him to the rednecks and blue collars in the GOP base. And if memory serves, Christie wasn't doing that well in the polls until his opponent attacked with fat jokes. Which led to that self-effacing quote cited by ABC and ultimately paved the road to his victory.

It's useful to remember the majority of the electorate is obese, or at least significantly overweight, and sensitive to mockery.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

It saddens me to see that "can the fat guy win against a fit guy with good hair?" is even an issue in choosing the so-called leader of the free world. It doesn't surprise me, but saddens all the same.


6:06:00 AM  
Blogger Libby Spencer said...

It is tragic that cosmetics are such a big factor. And even more so that the media feeds that by focusing on such trivia instead of their platform positions and work history.

8:50:00 AM  
Blogger Capt. Fogg said...

It isn't all that new. I remember back when Clinton was running against George I, CNN put up the question: "who is more fit - clinton or Bush?"

Silly me, I thought it meant fit for the job, not who could run a mile faster. But I guess it's important to have neolithic era superiority, since that's where we're heading. Of course Obama is rather athletic, so we won't be hearing that sort of question for a while.

9:11:00 AM  
Blogger said...

I actually have seen it posted as a health issue, not that I buy such concerns ... I think it's a more politically correct way for journalists to say "hey, have you noticed Chris Christie is FAT?!!" ... you know, a dodge.

It's not Christie's health I question as other more troubling issues related to his candidacy. But here's the thing: it's always been perfectly alright for conservatives to make fun of people like Michael Moore for being fat (and Al Gore, etc. etc.). But now that one of theirs is facing the same criticism they're calling for the whaambulance. I just find that amusing. IOKIYAR.

The fat thing serves a very useful purpose, though. It allows Christie to hide behind the victim card, so to speak. As long as Christie is a victim of mean liberals and a biased lamestream media, the rubes in the Tea Party might not notice that Christie is a pro-choice, pro-gun-control, pro-Muslim and pro a lot of other stuff the conservative base would find poisonous.

7:53:00 PM  
Blogger Libby Spencer said...

Since I posted this, I've also seen the health issue brought forward by some and dismissed by others. All I know for sure is making an issue of it is a mistake. It's why he got elected as governor in the first place. And yeah, it obscured what a lousy governor he is.

9:32:00 PM  

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