Sunday, May 26Hampton Roads Weekly

The Outrage Mob Goes Shopping

By Kerry Dougherty

It’s official. We’re turning into a nation of sniveling babies. Always looking for new ways to be offended.

Exhibit A: Macy’s.

Seems a “podcast host” most of us never heard of spied some novelty dinner plates in the popular department store and was so outraged by the sight of them that she started yapping. On her podcast, I presume.

Next thing you know, the milquetoasts running the company knuckled under and announced that they’d stop the sale of the horrifying plates.

What was on them, you ask. Something racist? Homophobic? Vulgar?

Nope, the plates had concentric circles, for portions. The smallest said “skinny jeans” the next bigger had “favorite jeans” and the biggest circle said “mom jeans.”

How dare they!

Apparently these plates are guilty. Guilty of fat shaming. Guilty of encouraging anorexia. Guilty of implying that it’s better to wear skinny jeans than mom jeans. Which, by the way, it is. Not that I can fit in mine right now.

Folks, we’ve lost our way.

These are plates. Inanimate objects. They were designed to make people smile. 

They might even be useful to someone trying to lose a few pounds through portion control.

But America’s humorless scolds shrieked and stomped their feet until they intimidated the midges running Macy’s.

I know, I know. There’s a movement afoot to make us think that there’s nothing wrong with being overweight. In fact, curves – no matter how curvy – are beautiful.

Sorry. I’m not buying it.

Fact is, Americans are super-sized. According to the CDC, 39.8 percent of us are obese. That means almost four out of 10 Americans are at a greater risk of heart disease, stroke, diabetes and some kinds of cancers due to their girths. Obesity costs Americans $147 billion a year. And, “The medical costs for those who have obesity was $1,429 higher than those of normal weight.”

Normal weight. The CDC’s term, not mine.

So don’t tell me not to fat shame. I’m on a diet. You probably should be too.

And I want those plates.

While we’re on the topic of the petty outrage mob, how about The Baltimore Sun reporter who yesterday took to Twitter to whine to Forever 21  about bike shorts emblazoned with “FAKE NEWS”?

“This is not funny, cute or fashionable, @Forever21. Why are you selling this product?’  griped Pamela Wood, who apparently considers herself a fashion reporter.

Twitter’s reaction was swift and merciless.

“Thoughts and prayers during this difficult time.”

“Your reaction is forcing me to buy a pair.”

You’re all for freedom of the press and expression until the expression is something you don’t like.

I agree completely. I’m literally shaking. I don’t want to live in a world where anyone can exercise their choice to wear comfortable, affordable clothing with a humorous slogan that triggers journalists. What is this? Nazi Germany?

Triggered by biking shorts…PRICELESS. I’m ordering 4 pairs.

Macy’s has some plates you should look at.

I couldn’t resist and joined in, thanking her for the tip and saying I was heading to the mall to buy a pair. 

A storm blew in, however, so I went to Forever 21’s website instead. There I found the $9.90 item – the company was having a 30% off sale – and tried to order a pair. Unfortunately, the only size left was S. 

And I’m too freaking fat for those. Dammit. I need those Macy’s plates.