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More About That Bass

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Comments on this post are also closed: This is why we can’t have nice things.

Comments on the original “All About That Bass” post are closed: I’ve elected to close those comments after a threat I received on my Facebook author page. The comments have now been removed, but here’s a screencap so you can see why I’m basically 100% done with that post and anyone’s thoughts on it (you’ll have to click on the image to see it full-sized):

Screen Shot 2014-08-10 at 5.22.01 PM

I think it’s fair to say that since comments disagreeing with this story have been so passionate as to sometimes cross into vitriol, and now have escalated into threats, I’m not overreacting in shutting them down. Especially since Facebook has not responded to my concerns with anything other than a form letter to let me know that they don’t answer their email. I guess if I disappear mysteriously, you’ll know what happened to me. In the event of my death by skinning,  send updates to Facebook. They won’t read them or respond to them, because they couldn’t care less.

Clarification on my comments regarding reconstructive surgery after mastectomy: A few people have expressed concerns about this portion of the “I’m Not All About That Bass” post:

Why is it that we don’t view breast implants as body modification on the same scale as piercings or tattoos? I have this crazy feeling that it has something to do with misogyny. Maybe because the primary objective of breast implants is to conform to a specific cultural standard? How is that different from piercing your septum?

I know how it’s different. Men pierce shit, too! Plastic surgery is viewed as a way for women to make themselves more sexually desirable to heterosexual men for as far into their lives as possible. Even reconstructive plastic surgery after breast cancer fulfills this role; when performed for the patient’s personal comfort, it’s still done to uphold the standard that all women must have breasts (well hello, transmisogyny!), which is what’s making that patient uncomfortable in the first place. To be clear, I’m not shaming anyone for having any elective cosmetic surgery for any reason, just defining our world view and cultural expectations of breasts in this context.”

When I first started receiving comments from women who were angry that I’d said all women who have elective breast reconstruction post-mastectomy were doing so to be sexually attractive, once I went back and read it I realized that I had not worded the passage carefully enough. I do not believe that every woman goes into breast reconstruction thinking, “I’m doing this to be sexy again.” I realize that to many women, losing their breasts is traumatic, and they’re choosing reconstruction because they want to feel whole or remove the reminder of what they went through as best they can. Some have made the argument for balance and posture issues in the case of partial mastectomy, which I’m not dismissing at all . The point I was trying to make, before I messed it all up in clumsy wording, is that replacement of any non-essential body part with a new, non-functioning version of that body part for cosmetic reasons is due to our cultural perception of how bodies “should” look.

If we lose a leg, we get a prosthesis so we can walk again. If we lose a hand, we might get a little claw. These are body parts that help our bodies to function, and the function can be more or less restored using these things. But if we lose our nose, we can’t replace it with a new nose that can perform the same function our old one did. When we have reconstructive surgery to return our bodies to a “whole” or “normal” looking state, we’re doing so because of deeply ingrained expectations of what a human being looks like. This is not a judgment against people who elect to have these surgeries. It is an observation and condemnation of cultural biases we do not notice about ourselves and which we have no control over. I’m not saying this should change so that women are unable to receive reconstruction. I’m not wagging a finger at women and saying, “You shouldn’t do this, it makes you vain.” I understand the reasons a woman would have reconstruction. I absolutely would have one, because not having breasts would make me feel, as many women do, like something about me was missing. But I would not be making this decision without any cultural conditioning that tells me that an important piece is missing. I would be making this decision specifically because of that cultural conditioning. If it were my nose, or my ear, or the removal of a facial scar or a mole, I would be doing it for the same reason. There is no possible way to make a decision about how our bodies look that does not have something to do with our expectations for how bodies should look. When people lose fingers, it’s less common to get a prosthetic one for cosmetic reasons. Do you know why? Because we don’t place as much aesthetic value on our fingers as we do our faces and our breasts.

Reiterating: having reconstruction does not make a woman bad, vain, shallow, or stupid, but no woman is making this decision with a mind devoid of awareness of cultural expectations.

If you disagree with this, or you still believe that by saying this I’m pointing fingers at women who choose reconstructive surgery, then I can’t prove further that I’m not, and this is pretty much the last thing I have to say on the subject.

Women who have had breast cancer and who have opted not to have reconstructive surgery share their views on gender expectations and how they played into their decision to forego reconstruction, and you can find their work here:

“Cover Your Boobs Whether You Have Them or Not”
“Life After Mastectomy and The Choice Against Reconstruction”
“I Chose to Live as a Flat Chested Woman”
“The Sum of All My Parts: A Guest Post on Feminism, Breast Cancer Awareness, and More”

None of these women have suggested that no one get reconstructive surgery, nor do they shame the women who decide to. But to overlook their valid points about how they’ve been treated due to their appearance post-mastectomy would be just as bad as making that judgement against the women who choose reconstruction.

If you didn’t agree that the song reinforces misogynistic cultural tropes, have a listen:

 Former X-Factor competitors Emblem3 have covered “All About That Bass.” See how you feel about lines like, “Us guys like a little more booty to hold at night,” and “It’s pretty clear she ain’t no size two/but she can shake it shake it/the way she’s supposed to do,” when you’re listening to young men sing them.

Not only do they reinforce they original tropes that made the song so problematic in the first place, they up the ante on the misogyny and body shaming by changing lyrics to say things like, “She’s bringing booty back/go ahead and tell those skinny bitches that/no more joking/never say you’re fat,” and “My father once told me don’t worry about her size.” Are we supposed to applaud this? It’s positive to hear young men trash “skinny bitches,” just so some women can feel better about not fulfilling a standard of beauty they’re longing for? How’s that body positivity working out for you, women who showed up in the comments to tell me I’m the one doing the shaming?

Also, Emblem3, rethink your policy of covering songs by female artists and making them all about you. It makes you look like assholes.

If you liked the message behind “All About That Bass,” try this instead: Many commenters who disagreed with me suggested I was either a frustrated singer/songwriter who couldn’t make it, or that I should write a song and make it better than Meghan Trainors. As I am not a singer/songwriter, I can neither be frustrated by my non-existent failed music career, nor can I write a song, because I lack the necessary skills and education needed to do so. However, I can recommend some body positive songs that should make you feel as good, if not better than, what you’re hearing in “All About That Bass.”

I wanted to make this list longer, but it seems like it’s impossible for a woman to write a song about accepting our bodies without relying on the validation of the male gaze.

And now, I’m done talking about this song. When I wrote that piece, I had no idea that I would receive more outright hate mail in a few weeks than I did when I tore apart Fifty Shades of Grey over the course of two years, or when I wrote about Jennifer Lawrence and it wasn’t to fall all over myself loving how she falls all over. Congratulations, Meghan Trainor stans. You’re officially 100,000 times more frightening and unbalanced than 50 Shades readers and JLaw fans combined. That’s really, really saying something.

94 Comments

  1. Kelman
    Kelman

    Thank you for taking the time to clarify your earlier post, although personally I didn’t find any issue with your old post (the way I read, specific wording doesn’t affect me as much as overall meaning). And absolutely, Mary Lambert is an amazing singer with wonderfully positive messages in her songs.

    August 11, 2014
  2. Lara
    Lara

    Dude, I love you!!! Those fans are terrifying. And I really don’t understand it. I’m a fan of a ton of things. You, Weird Al, cats, food, hating the word moist. I have never threatened to make a necklace of someone’s teeth just because they hate cats. (I believe that friend said “they are the devil’s minions.”) I have never even been tempted to threaten harm to someone who doesn’t like Weird Al. Look at them like they are crazy? Of course. “Accidentally” post a Weird Al video on their FB page? Maybe. Threaten them? No. Take care of yourself, Jenny!!!

    August 11, 2014
  3. I’m so sorry you had to deal with comments like that! Even if someone doesn’t agree with you, that doesn’t give them the right the threaten your life or your safety. Unfortunately, I’m sad to say that I’m not shocked by Facebook’s reaction…or lack thereof. This is pretty typical from them, to ignore what they don’t want to have to deal with. (but god forbid you post a photo of yourself in a bikini, because if someone reports THAT it’ll get taken down immediately)

    My problem with the song is that it’s just one more instance of suggesting there is one acceptable weight for women. Just because it’s not “thin”, doesn’t mean it isn’t gross and unacceptable.

    August 11, 2014
  4. Mary
    Mary

    I just wanted to say that I totally understand what you meant about breast reconstruction the first time. I loved your critique of All About the Bass. It is sad to see some people react so horribly to it.

    August 11, 2014
  5. How about Try by Colbie Caillat, for another more positive songs?

    http://youtu.be/GXoZLPSw8U8

    I don’t think it’s perfect, it sort of sounds like it’s implying that certain behaviors (not wearing makeup for example) are better than others (wearing makeup), though from what I’ve read that is based on her own experiences of feeling pressured into those things. But I love the focus on liking yourself instead of worrying about what other people think of you.

    August 11, 2014
  6. Lara
    Lara

    Not sure if it would help, but I went back to your post about NPR and clicked the x by Jacob’s comment. Then I told Facebook why I didn’t want to see it. Maybe if all of us do that, they might take it a little bit seriously??? But probably not.

    August 11, 2014
    • Katharine
      Katharine

      Lara, Good idea! I went ahead and did the same thing. Here’s hoping Facebook finally takes some notice of the way people act on their site…

      August 11, 2014
  7. grr! arrgh!
    grr! arrgh!

    Holy shnikes! I’ve been elsewhere on the internet since you were at Authors After Dark and missed all of this until just now. And…wow…just wow. I mean, I guess I shouldn’t be surprised at this point when someone says on the internet, “You know, I find this thing X in pop culture problematic and here’s why.” And instead of replying with “that’s interesting, I never thought of it that way,” or “I disagree, and here’s why” followed by complete, profanity-free sentences expressing actual fully-formed thoughts, the internet strikes back with “HOW DARE YOU HAVE AN OPINON WOMAN, DEATH THREAT, THREAT OF BODILY HARM, HIDEOUS INSULT, REDUCTION OF YOUR WORTH TO HOW MEN FEEL ABOUT YOUR ATTRATIVENESS, PROFANITY PROFANITY PROFANITY.” But all I can think when I read your facebook screen cap is, what the hell is wrong with people? (The fact that threateny misogynist McGee appears to have a baby girl as his profile pic elevates an already depressing and nauseating series of comments into hyperemisis terratory.)

    I’m sorry you had to deal with the insane crap that too often comes with having the audacity of being a woman with thoughts on the internet. It’s no okay. It’s hard to know what to say when the world craps on someone you admire and there’s no way to really fix it or make sure it doesn’t happen again in the short term, but if it’s at all helpful, I wanted to say that I think your voice on the internet is incredibly valuable – even when I disagree – and I’m always going to be here, eagerly reading what you have to say. I’m also going to be writing facebook about them not acting on the threats you received, even though they’ll probably ignore me too.

    August 11, 2014
    • Naomi
      Naomi
      August 12, 2014
    • Bubbles
      Bubbles

      I’m glad I wasn’t the only one who noticed that the person making serious threats had a damn infant as their profile picture. That’s disturbing as shit.

      August 12, 2014
      • Akri
        Akri

        Wow, totally did not see that at first. That is incredibly creepifyin’

        August 12, 2014
    • JordieBelle
      JordieBelle

      Seconded.

      August 13, 2014
    • Rhiannon
      Rhiannon

      I was pretty shocked that someone who appears to be a FATHER was saying stuff like that, too. 🙁
      Also, as someone who DOESN’T live in the US, people who rant on facebook that ‘this is America’ always seem particularly stupid to me, like they think the Internet only works in the US.

      August 16, 2014
  8. Pansy Petal
    Pansy Petal

    I want to say, THANK YOU! I appreciate how you stand up for yourself and others. The bullies of the world . . . Well, I will not lower myself to their level, but what sad lives they have that they must spend them trashing others. Also, thank you for introducing me to this wonderful songwriter/singer. She not only has an inspiring message and a fantastic voice, but she is drop dead gorgeous! Thank you!

    August 11, 2014
  9. Akri
    Akri

    Those threats break my brain. I just….what the hell? How do you go from “this person disagrees with me about the messages conveyed by this song’s lyrics” to “I will make a necklace from your teeth”? Especially when the song in question is dealing with /acceptance/?

    “I love this song because it tells people to be accepting”
    “I’m not so sure about that. It’s definitely trying to send that message, but the lyrics have some rather unfortunate implications.”
    “BITCH I’MA CUT YOU!”

    Does not compute.

    August 11, 2014
    • What? You don’t see the clear logic in that train of thoughts??? 😉

      August 13, 2014
  10. Le Meh
    Le Meh

    The reason Meghan Trainor stans are more terrifying than J Lawrence and FSoG fans combined is because a lot of the stans aren’t really stans. They just saw what looked like a hater, and had to “defend” Trainor because her song advocated a “positive” message that was really not that positive.

    People these days.

    August 11, 2014
    • BitterAlmonds
      BitterAlmonds

      They aren’t defending the song, they’re defending themselves. They’re reading Jenny’s analysis as a personal attack on the taste and beliefs of anyone who likes the song for any reason instead of ‘This song actually has some really disturbing stuff and this is why it’s wrong’. It’s not just ‘How dare you not like this thing I like’ but ‘How dare you ATTACK both this song AND ME’.
      Which, well, it is what it is. But to respond with personal attacks is bad enough; escalating it to threats is even worse. It’s a shame facebook doesn’t give a shit unless it gives them bad publicity.

      August 15, 2014
  11. iammorethanyousee
    iammorethanyousee

    “If we lose a hand we might get a little claw.”- Jenny Trout
    My decisions are based not on matching some sociatal definition of “normal” – that can be your BS theory or guess or why you would do something. They are based on trying to recover some of what was normal for ME, based on life before cancer. Not everyone thinks the same. You are obnoxious to try to say that is the central reason all people use for making these decisions. It is a personal decision. Your comment above demonstrates again your insensitivity and ignorance. I think you just wanted to use the word transmysogeny. Maybe more time, empathy and careful thought would make things a bit Iess awkward than the “little claw” comment. Good luck in life.

    August 11, 2014
    • JennyTrout
      JennyTrout

      There is very little I would love more than to never, ever have to use the word “transmisogyny.”

      August 12, 2014
      • flrgrl
        flrgrl

        As a BC survivor (mastectomy left side) I wasn’t offended at all originally and thought this reply was sensitive and pointedly informative. I don’t think there is a way to comprehend, i.e. be empathetic enough, how vulnerable on so many levels BC makes you. Especially if you’ve never thought about body image or male gaze.
        Thank you plugging away at these issues.

        August 12, 2014
    • Amy
      Amy

      Long time blog lurker, but I just felt the need to reply to this.

      I think you’re being extremely defensive. I’m so sorry you had to go through that; my cousin’s going through chemo for breast cancer right now, so I have a vague understanding of the level of suffering it causes. But Jen is speaking on sociological terms. Her comment isn’t ignorant or insensitive. It’s generalized.

      I’m a sociology major, and people misunderstand the discipline a LOT. Lots of people going “we aren’t ALL like that” or “well I’M the exception,” but the thing is, sociology can’t make exceptions. It’s the study of society as a whole and goes hand in hand with psychology, which studies individuals. So when someone like Jenny is making a comment on a cultural phenomenon, she’s speaking in general terms, and yes, there is a very prevalent trend in modern American society of viewing breasts as a necessity for women primarily because of the male gaze, and thus subconsciously a lot of women consider them a necessity. She wasn’t even commenting on why survivors of breast cancer choose to get reparative surgery; she was just pointing how deeply rooted the sexualization of women’s bodies is in our modern psyche.

      So it’s not obnoxious for her to talk about this. It’s important that she does.

      I’m all for being empathetic and understanding, but when you’re discussing such a broad issue, you can’t add little disclaimers for every possible outlier. That’s not effective writing.

      Maybe try to be less defensive, okay? You’ll have a happier life for it.

      Also, Jen: I hope I’m not putting words in your mouth, but this is just what I figured you were going for.

      August 12, 2014
      • Cosigned by another sociology major.

        We understand it’s a personal choice. We just want to know why almost everybody is making the SAME personal choice.

        August 12, 2014
        • Alex
          Alex

          “We understand it’s a personal choice. We just want to know why almost everybody is making the SAME personal choice.”

          QFT and I wish people would actually take sociology more seriously, rather than parroting some poorly researched evo psych bullshit.

          August 12, 2014
          • You know, I have to say I disagree that it’s necessarily societal pressure and I think the person who said she did it because it was normal for her has a point.

            I have been anywhere from a size 3 to a size 12 in my life as an adult (110 pounds to 166 pounds). I realize that is not that huge for a lot of people, but for me, 166 pounds and size 12 is completely alien.

            I have been with my fiance for nine years and have been up and down 30 pounds in that time. He has never once complained or shown less interest in me and other men still look, stare and even approach and literally ask me on dates at the gas station or the grocery store. So, attracting male attention at size 12 was no more difficult for me than at a size 3. Yet I am NOT COMFORTABLE at a size 12. I was very small for three-plus decades of my life and I don’t know what to do with a different kind of body. I don’t know how to dress it. I don’t know how to carry it. I don’t know how to just sit in it and exist. It is an identity issue far more than what society or men want to see.

            And, as a mammal with sexual feelings, yes, attracting men matters to me. I don’t know why that isn’t OK to feel or be happy about. It isn’t as though humans are an outlier in the animal kingdom when it comes to physical attraction being a part of sexual desire. It’s actually normal. And in general, men are more visual than women (that’s why their porn is Playboy and ours is erotic novels that usually feature strong, rich men who will fight battles to win us).

            I am not going to apologize for wanting to be physically attractive. It is not all that I am and it doesn’t rule my sense of self-worth. But it is a part of a whole. And even feeling that way and admitting to it, I will tell you I put very little effort into my appearance. My hair is wash and go. I don’t color it (even though grays are beginning to appear). I rarely wear makeup. In the summer I live in sundresses. They’re cute, but I wear them because they’re easy and comfortable. In winter, it’s jeans, sweaters and comfy shoes. But I still want to feel pretty.

            August 13, 2014
          • Vera
            Vera

            I’m genuinely not trying to be rude or confrontational, Renee, but I feel like there’s a big disconnect here. I read what you write and it all seems perfectly logical to me (as someone who has also been much heavier and very uncomfortable with it), but how is your discomfort *not* tied into societal standards of what women should look like? Your identity is tied in to having a particular body type that we see as the “right” type. Being heavier is the “wrong” type.

            My journey was actually the reverse of yours — I was very overweight and very unhappy for most of my life, and then I had a dramatic weight loss and now have a “normal” size. I have definitely faced challenges adjusting, both from a physical/sensory perspective and an intellectual/emotional perspective, but I’m not going to lie, it’s a lot easier being “normal.”

            It seems like you’re concerned that Jenny is saying there’s something wrong with that, but there’s not. All she’s saying is that we learn what we’re taught, and some things are aimed at teaching something that isn’t quite right.

            August 14, 2014
    • Lieke
      Lieke

      Jenny is just pointing out that no one lives in a vacuum. We are all affected by what society’s standards. Therefore, yes, what is normal for you has in some degree been influenced by what society has deemed normal. That’s all Jenny was saying.

      August 12, 2014
      • Lieke
        Lieke

        ‘We are all affected by society’s standards’ is what that should be.

        August 12, 2014
    • Robin
      Robin

      There’s not much I can say in reply that hasn’t already been said a thousand times better than I could say it, but I will say that based on your words, you most likely haven’t read anything else Jenny has ever written. Any time Jenny feels she has been insensitive or ignorant, she does her best to clarify or correct it. That’s a hell of a lot more than most people do.

      Furthermore, what would you prefer she say in place of the “little claw” comment? Saying “you were wrong to use a word or phrase!” without suggesting an alternative doesn’t really help anyone. Frankly, I wouldn’t know what the preferred term for prosthetic claws would be either, and maybe if you’d have said, some of us could have learned something instead of just getting our hackles up.

      August 13, 2014
  12. ScarlettP
    ScarlettP

    Sigh.

    Jenny, I love your writing. You are thoughtful and articulate and you bring up points that are important to talk about, and you do it with a sense of humor. Even when I disagree with you – especially when I disagree with you – you always make me think.

    And almost all your commentors are fantastic, rational, thoughtful people as well. One of the reasons I visit your blog is because reading the comments generally helps restore my faith in humanity.

    But what is going on lately? Even when you go to great lengths to explain your position – even when you have the grace to take people’s objections and complaints seriously, admit that you weren’t as clear as you wanted to be, and address those objections and complaints respectfully, there are still people who JUST DON’T GET IT. Aside from the threats of bodily harm (and it is frightening and bizarre and disturbing that anyone thinks that is an appropriate response to anything), there are still people who manage to get their knickers in a twist because they somehow think that your posts are all about THEM. What the hell?

    I’m sorry for all the grief (to put it mildly) you’ve been getting about this topic.

    August 12, 2014
  13. Victoria
    Victoria

    I am rather new here as I discovered this site after the Bikini article, and stayed for the Buffy recaps – which are amazing and I want them all to be available, and kinda wish I discovered this site years from now when they are all already completed so I could stay at my computer for days and just read Buffy recaps – but I digress.
    I really just wanted to say that your writing is amazing, and I really enjoy your point of view. I don’t always agree with everything – but that’s part of being on the internet – but even when I don’t agree with you I enjoy reading what you have to say.
    I am so so sorry that you have had such awful comments on a good article – its crazy to me that people can jump straight to insanity so quickly.
    The only reason I wanted to comment was to throw another voice behind your supporters. Keep doing what you’re doing and being awesome 🙂

    August 12, 2014
    • Candy Apple
      Candy Apple

      I KNOW! I came for the Jennifer Lawrence post, stayed for the Buffy recaps. Then I read the “50 Shades” recaps and the little part inside of me that died when those books came out came back to life again. SO, now I’m just sticking around for general laffs and therapy.

      August 14, 2014
  14. Ilex
    Ilex

    Jenny, I’ve been so impressed with the way you let all the comments go up, no matter what they said. If it were my blog, I would have been tempted to cull out the really nasty ones, but you let everyone express themselves just as they saw fit. I really admire the strength and bravery you’ve shown in response to all the passions your post stirred up.

    That said, I’ll be glad to see the hind end of all those comments.

    August 12, 2014
  15. Allie
    Allie

    Jenny, I think you’re really impressive for being able to handle all this. I wish people would not be horrible, but I guess that’s the world!

    For the list of songs about body acceptance, I like I Am Jen’s “Broken in All the Right Places”. It seems to be a song about a girl looking in a mirror and accepting herself for who she is (flaws and all). (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=832YvQHzFqg)

    August 12, 2014
  16. Mara
    Mara

    It’s not strictly body-positive but here is one of my favorite feel-good songs. He says: ” If all the world were perfect I would only want to see your scars” which always spoke to me about not caring what everyone else looks like.
    Darren Hayes of Savage Garden – So Beautiful: http://youtu.be/0HpA7UZvWdc

    Jenny, I’m sorry you’re dealing with terrible people. As always, you seem to be handling it with grace and strength. I admire you and love your blog.

    August 12, 2014
  17. Annie
    Annie

    I’m so sorry you’ve had these aggressive responses to your post. I found it very interesting, reasonable and well-balanced. Also, I really admire the way you consistently promote the beauty of women of all sizes on your site.

    August 12, 2014
  18. Tio
    Tio

    You MIGHT want to cut the chat bar off the side of your image. Anyone crazy enough to death threat you might not be above harassing your friends. Just a thought.

    August 12, 2014
  19. But Jenny, this is America! You can’t just share your opinions like that. Gosh.

    August 12, 2014
  20. Tori
    Tori

    My best friend had a double mastectomy last year at 30, and she’s still on the fence about reconstruction. She told me once that if she was 50 or 60, she probably wouldn’t even consider it, but she’s so young and she wants to feel sexy, and breasts are part of that for her. In the meantime, until she decides, she has a bra with the chicken cutlet things in case she wants them, but I’ve noticed that she seems to be feeling more and more confident going without. I think it helps in her specific case that her boyfriend is a self-admitted ass man, and that hasn’t changed. 🙂

    I’m sure not every woman goes into that decision thinking, “I want to feel sexy and my breasts are important for that,” but I don’t doubt that it’s there subconsciously, at least. And I mean real subconscious, not “inner goddess” subconscious. I don’t know, I think we’re all just trying to feel at home in our bodies. I’m also on muscle relaxers so I might not make any sense anymore.

    August 12, 2014
  21. Flo
    Flo

    I’m still shaking my head at the reaction of someone who didn’t agree with you. If he gets that worked up over your opinion over some song lyrics, I shudder to think how he reacts to some of the other stuff going on in the world. Of course, what am I thinking, someone that idiotic doesn’t know what’s going on in the world, he’s too busy worrying about stupid shit and threatening people. Something tells me he has the brain the size of a pea. I feel sorry for the baby in the avatar photo if it belongs to him.

    August 12, 2014
  22. So sorry people were that vile to you, Jenny- it’s genuinely terrifying. (Especially given your very clear explanation that “liking problematic things is fine, but we can still acknowledge they are problematic, and should do so).

    Also, thank you so much for the Mary Lambert recs. Fat, mentally ill, constantly late, gay trans man here who really, really appreciated “Secrets”

    August 13, 2014
  23. Trynn
    Trynn

    As someone who is chronically underweight…

    Comments like, “skinny bitch” or “go eat a sandwich, skinny thing,” or even, in some cases, “toothpick,” are just as harmful as “fat bitch,” “go on a diet, fatty,” or “pig.”

    It irks me to no END that the only response some people seem to have for fat shaming is skinny shaming.

    August 13, 2014
    • This. I’ve been skinny, I’ve been fat, right now I’m somewhere in the middle. There’s never been a time when someone hasn’t been trying to police my body. When I was skinny I was told I needed to eat more, that I was too bony, that my lack of breasts made me look like a boy. When I was fat I was told I was lazy, that no one wanted a fat girl, that I shouldn’t eat what I want. Now that my weight is more “acceptable” I’m told (again) that my breasts are too small, that I should be careful not to gain weight again, that I’m shallow for losing weight (my weight loss was caused by going off medication that made me gain 60 lbs to start with so neither was really under my control). There is no way to win unless we stop policing other people’s bodies.

      August 13, 2014
  24. Mia
    Mia

    Just wanted to share one of my favorite body-positive songs, “Pot Belly” by Freshlyground (although I will acknowledge that parts of it are still predicated on someone else’s view/experience of that body):

    August 13, 2014
  25. Sometimes I think it’s good that I’m old and out of touch anymore. lol Never heard the song until just now and only because of you.

    I don’t understand why it’s necessary to tear other women down in order to feel good about yourself. I mean, I have known women who were skinny and bitches and I’ve known women who were fat and bitches and I’ve known women of all sizes who are wonderful, loving, sweet people. So what the heck is this “skinny bitch” BS all the time? The irony is that a woman who is truly comfortable in her skin wouldn’t have to say something like that. Am I sometimes envious of women with a body shape I wish I had? Absolutely. But I don’t assign personality traits to them over it or insult them either to their faces or behind their backs. ARGH!

    Anyway, sorry to say I missed your interview. I’m sure you were great. And it’s sad that someone with an infant as his profile picture is such an ass. If it makes you feel better, I commented on a FB post about a turtle that had been run over that I know some people do that on purpose and therefore I “hate” people and some twit told me I should kill myself — this was the day after Robin Williams’ suicide, too.

    So, yeah, I hate people and these things are not changing my mind!

    August 13, 2014
    • (Although it’s kind of a catchy tune, so too bad the lyrics suck.)

      August 13, 2014
    • SandorClegane13
      SandorClegane13

      Since I couldn’t reply to your comment above (guess after a certain point in a thread that feature goes away? ) I wanted to thank you for sharing your thoughts and experience on being more comfortable at a smaller size. I too would find it very difficult to feel right in my own skin if I was bigger, which is part of my motivation for exercising and watching my diet. As I am, I love my body to bits! I know time will change some things inevitably, but that’s life and I accept that. Some things I won’t.

      The kicker is this: projection. Waaaaay too many people of all shapes and sizes project the judgment of their own bodies and personal choices onto others, and that is wrong. My own mother does this in a huge way. I love her to death but damn is she a fat-shamer! (She grew up overweight and lost it in her early twenties, so she has a major ‘if I did it what’s your excuse?’ mindset.) I personally don’t care how someone else looks or what they weigh. The only body I care about the appearance and size of is my own, and that’s the only body where I have any business doing so. I really wish more people would realize this. The world would be a happier place!

      August 15, 2014
      • Totally with you on projection, but it works both ways. I have many friends and family who are overweight and it’s their business. I would NEVER say anything to them and support them in whatever they choose. If they want to start exercising with me, they’e welcome. If not, we do other things together.

        But I have had a couple of them tell me they feel sorry for me because I want to be smaller and one actually got angry with me for it.

        The thoughts I expressed above are about MY body and only my body, just to be very, very clear. I would also imagine someone who has been heavy all of his or her life might feel uncomfortable at a smaller size because it isn’t what that person is used to.

        August 15, 2014
  26. Amatyultare
    Amatyultare

    UGH. I’m sorry you’ve had to deal with such awful comments.

    Also, it’s really only tangentially about body positivity but in terms of self-empowerment that’s not based on comparisons to someone else, and actively REJECTS the idea of ‘I’m good become someone else approves of me’, ‘That’s Alright’ by Laura Mvula is one of my favorites.

    August 13, 2014
  27. Lavender
    Lavender

    How are death threats still allowed on Facebook and Twitter? Wtf? I know ‘it’s the internet’ and ‘expect to be offended’ are true to some degree. But fucking death threats? That’s scary shit and should be taken very seriously. If the little assholes who did it had their internet anonymity taken away and were called out on it by the police, let’s see how quick they are to do it again.

    August 15, 2014
  28. KayP
    KayP

    I have never left a comment on a blog or article online before, but I feel compelled to here (though I may not be the best with words). I do feel everyone is entitled to their opinion though and I don’t agree with anyone getting threatened for it – period. After this I will choose to never read your writings or listen to you in an interview because I simply don’t agree with your view points.

    After reading your follow up piece to respond to the comments about breast cancer patients, I think you still just don’t get it. I’m glad you responded and admitted that you muddled your words in the first blog (I was horrified when I read that paragraph). I know some people elect not to have reconstruction surgery after a mastectomy and some people do. I feel it is a very personal matter and it should not be commented about in a such passionate way by a person like you. I volunteer heavily in the breast cancer community (my mom and grandmother went through it) and I want to ask if you’ve even seen all the scars and alterations a person’s body goes through during such a process as fighting breast cancer? It’s pretty unreal and traumatizing.

    Most of the lines you picked apart in the original blog just made me want to face palm my forehead. “I’m all about that bass, no treble” it’s just a song and it’s just a pun.

    As for the fat v. skinny bitches, again I believe it’s a personal issue and struggle we all have that are relative to our own view points. Personally, I’m a size 14 and have been considered obese (teetering on over-weight) on the medical scale for many years now. And I shop in plus-sizes. I’m similar to Meghan Trainor’s shape just much taller (I assume taller because I’m 5’10 and she doesn’t appear very tall in the video). I was going to write more on this issue and how I believe you are attacking the song just because the singer doesn’t look more like you… but again I’m not great with words and you are entitled to your opinion. But since there is a comment box, I’m entitled to my opinions too.

    August 16, 2014
  29. KG
    KG

    Just wanted to profess my love for you. That is all. Goodnight!

    August 16, 2014
  30. cass
    cass

    interesting really, its like our culture and media only allow us to accept people to a point and within specific ranges. Be genuine, be yourself but within these lines. Even those (like the video shown) are being ‘out there’ but within what is expected of an out there person.
    [i love the second song you posted in my head forever now.]
    It’s like accept people from this size to this size and no one on either side. the use of the term ‘issue’ is an interesting one issue refers to an institutional problem yet it is being applied to individuals their weight issue making it seem like their letting someone/thing down // its out of their control.. I know their is a healthy weight range but that’s a lame excuse sometimes for judging.. I’m actually on the slightly too skinny side and the shame people try to make me feel is horrible.
    I don’t particularly like the way i look (when people comment) and I want to be healthy but man Lame Excuse to bully -passive-aggressively- and make yourself feel like your in control and she’s not, like you have one up on someone cause your closer to that right size…
    (speaking to the general/plural you 🙂 )
    looking at the hate you’ve gotten.. I don’t know the singer but no where did you insult her ability in any way nor did you go personal, I’m sure she would have found it an interesting read, (like i meant that there, no not there, oh its just someones opinion). In schools and universities we do this kind of dissecting all the time about adds and songs. Its in reference to culture not to the individual. To understand that we are each outplaying, influences of our present and past cultures is to recognise who we are and who we are being defined to be.
    And although i agree with most of what you said about the song I will still listen to it because it’s a song thats catchy and I can shake my lil booty to (which emphasises the misogyny of The Man, really).

    August 20, 2014
  31. I read the original, having never heard the song, and thought what you said was interesting and insightful. It put quite eloquently the feelings I have about the irony and hypocrisy of the “fat acceptance” narrative. Anyway, I’m sorry to hear the internet crazies went so far as to make threats to your safety. I’m glad you wrote it and I hope the majority feedback you receive is positive, and obviously that no threats actually materialize.

    August 21, 2014
  32. Stacey
    Stacey

    Hi Jenny. I was directed to “I’m Not All About That Bass” when I shared a link to the song on my FaceBook page. While I still like the song and music video (catchy tune, fifties style) I thoroughly enjoyed the post. Back in my ‘varsity days I wrote a paper in which I shredded Cosmopolitan Magazine and I read your article with much the same approach. The piece was well constructed and thought provoking and I completely support the view that we should not be blindly spoon-fed by the media. I briefly skimmed through the comments (I generally don’t ever look at comments since trolls rile me up) and was so disappointed that what could have been an academic debate became so personal and nonsensical. Unfortunately, such is the nature of the internet. I hope you keep doing what you do – you have at least one new follower who is going to read all your most ‘controversial’ (read thought provoking) pieces. Good luck!

    PS: I’ve also been an avid Buffy fan since the age of fourteen so I’m going to read all those posts too!!!

    August 21, 2014
  33. Lei
    Lei

    I think “I’m all about that bass.” was intended to mean booty/big ass/whatnot. “No treble.” I took to mean “nothing thin.”

    Fits with the rest of the train with the song.

    Also – body acceptance is a bit of an issue – but I feel it a bit wrong to point out that someone “isn’t fat” by your definition of it. It’s not going to stop someone else from calling them fat.

    August 22, 2014
  34. Taylor Huston
    Taylor Huston

    Awesome. Another post by someone who likes not liking things that other people like because they think it makes them edgy. “Hey everyone, you know that thing you all like, well I don’t like it, aren’t I so controversial?” No, you’re predictable and trying way too hard.

    There are so many things about your original post that just make me shake my head.

    First off, it’s a pop song. No one is expecting Maya Angelou level eloquence and thought provocation. But it’s a catchy pop song with an obviously positive message. Any song (or poem, short story, etc. for that matter), can be deconstructed in such a way to be misinterpreted to sound like it’s negative or means something different. But the message is pretty clear. People like you are the people who like to use the letter of a law to apply it in a way that is in no way aligned with the spirit of said law.

    “But not fat or “plus-size” by any means. Don’t let the unflattering dress trick your eye. This girl is not a fat girl.”

    …..So? She’s not claiming to be fat. The point of the song isn’t “it’s okay to be obese so go ahead and drink another gallon soda”, the point of the song is “you can be a HEALTHY weight (like she is) and still be attractive, that if you’re not naturally rail thin, don’t worry about it.” How is that not a positive message? Just because she’s not obese, like yourself, she’s not allowed to sing about body issues? I didn’t realize there was a minimum weight for that.

    I’m sure you have plenty of body images and insecurities, because you are overweight. Not a healthy weight, but overweight. So what, you feel the need to attack people who are saying that it’s okay to be a healthy weight, because you’re not a healthy weight and therefore this song doesn’t specifically apply to you? This is a song for girls that are a healthy weight but don’t feel attractive because they don’t look like the overly skinny girls in the media and magazines. This is not a song for you, someone who can’t muster the willpower to put down the donuts.

    You’re a bully. You bash on other people to mask your own insecurities and make yourself feel better. This is no different then beating up kids on the playground. Instead of spending all this time and energy over analyzing and tearing down others, why don’t you channel that into a treadmill sometime. I guarantee it will do much more for your self-respect.

    August 26, 2014
    • Taylor Huston
      Taylor Huston

      Wow, I just read the other ‘fat’ tagged post you have, this one about Jennifer Lawrence.

      Basic synopsis of that article is that you’re unhappy with Jennifer Lawrence talking about body issues because she’s not a ‘real fatty’. In other words, you’re attacking someone who’s a healthy weight for saying that it’s okay to be a healthy weight. I am beginning to notice a trend here.

      You don’t like the message “it’s okay to be a healthy weight”, because you’re not even close to a healthy weight. You want the message to be “it’s okay to be any weight”, so that way you can tell yourself it’s okay to be overweight.. And instead of spending the time and effort to get to a healthy weight, you just attack anyone who promotes a positive healthy weight message, because that message doesn’t apply to YOU.

      You’re overweight. Maybe you’re okay with that, and that’s great. Seriously. I’ve got overweight friends, and they are okay with it, because they love food and eating and everything that goes with it. That’s their thing and they own it. But lets face facts and admit that it’s a choice. Being a super ripped athlete is very difficult and not something a lot of people can ever achieve. But it’s not that difficult to be not obese, if you actually want to change. Just because you choose to remain at an unhealthy weight doesn’t mean you can tear down people who are a healthy weight just so you can feel better about yourself.

      August 26, 2014
    • JennyTrout
      JennyTrout

      You just spent two lengthy comments calling me fat, then tried to call me out for bullying, then said I need to spend my time better. All I can think is that I hope you must be real damn pretty, because you sure didn’t get any fucking brains.

      August 28, 2014
      • Taylor Huston
        Taylor Huston

        You are overweight. I don’t think there is any debate over that fact. You, yourself, has admitted so in these blog posts, blog posts where you call out other people for not being as overweight as you? You are a bully. You’re using the internet to rip apart positive things that other people have done in order to avoid dealing with your own insecurities and issues. That’s bullying 101. You’re no better then every other internet troll posting toxic comments on YouTube videos to make themselves feel good.

        I’m not perfect. But I accept that and work on improving myself, instead of tearing other people down just to make myself feel better.

        The entire point of your original post is you were upset that someone who ” is not a fat girl” wrote a catchy song about encouraging girls that are a healthy weight to not be insecure about it. Why? You’re not a healthy weight so it doesn’t apply to you. It’s a positive message for everyone that it does apply to, the millions of teenage girls that are a healthy weight but don’t feel attractive because Photoshop is a thing. It’s not hurting anyone. It’s not causing any harm. But you felt the need to attack it because why, only severely overweight people are allowed to talk about body issues? Please enlighten me, what’s the minimum weight requirement for that?

        Like I said before, if you spent the time and energy you spend tearing other people down and instead channeled it into actually improving yourself, that would do much better for your obvious self-esteem issues.

        If you’re fine with your weight, great. Seriously. More power to you. If that’s you’re thing then work it girl. And if you’re not fine with it, then do something about it. It’s seriously not that hard to eat a reasonable amount of calories a day. But either way, not-fat-enough-shaming other people isn’t going to make you feel any better in the long run.

        August 29, 2014
        • JennyTrout
          JennyTrout

          You don’t know me, you don’t know if I have self-esteem issues, and you’re not going to make me suddenly repent my horrible ways and love the goddamn song, so who’s wasting their time?

          August 29, 2014
          • Taylor Huston
            Taylor Huston

            People who feel the need to tear other people down always have self-esteem issues. That’s why they feel the need to tear other people down, it’s to feel better about themselves. Confident, secure people don’t feel the need to try and bring others down to their level. Healthy well adjusted kids don’t become playground bullies.

            August 29, 2014
  35. Taylor Huston
    Taylor Huston

    People who feel the need to tear other people down always have self-esteem issues. That’s why they feel the need to tear other people down, it’s to feel better about themselves. Confident, secure people don’t feel the need to try and bring others down to their level. Healthy well adjusted kids don’t become playground bullies.

    August 29, 2014
    • You keep using that word (bully). I do not think it means what you think it means.

      Thought-out, reasoned and backed up critique of art (in any form) and social constructs is not bullying. What Jenny feels about herself isn’t relevant. You don’t have to agree with her, but she made many good points. I could argue that the singer is a bully based on her incredibly divisive and negative comments about women who are not on the heavier side. How does that serve the body image issue? A lot of women — and especially teenage girls — are very thin without even trying (I was one of them). Is it OK with you for this singer to single them out and tell them how unattractive they are? Because you’re condoning that in your posts.

      As for the “it isn’t that hard to eat better and exercise,” check yourself buddy.

      I was thin my entire life. I put on a few pounds in my late 20s, but managed to lose them. And then, despite tracking calories, not overeating and exercising like crazy, I started putting on 10-15 pounds a year. I went to the doctor. I went again. I was dismissed and ignored. I was told I was probably just not being honest about my food intake.

      But you know what was really going on? You know the thing that, if I hadn’t finally gotten my doctor to LISTEN TO ME would have had me weighing 200-plus pounds in a couple years, was really going on? My TSH (thyroid) level is more than DOUBLE what it should be. There is literally nothing I can do about my weight until get on the proper medication.

      Thyroid issues are more and more common, especially among women in their 30s. I suspect mine was caused by a change in birth control (which the company denies, but many women have experienced).

      As Jenny said, you calling her a bully after the things you posted here is more than a little hypocritical. Quit throwing that word around like it’s nothing. It MEANS something and this post (and the others) is not bullying.

      August 29, 2014
  36. Taylor Huston
    Taylor Huston

    I know exactly what the word bully means. And Jenny is a bully. She didn’t present an unbiased and thoughtful critique of the song. She called her out for not being ‘fat enough’ to have body issues. The same as she did in her previous blog post about Jennifer Lawrence not being fat enough to talk about body issues, and contrasted her to someone who is admittedly very overweight, Melissa McCarthy. Once again implying that you can’t talk about body issues if you’re a little on the bigger side, you have to be significantly over weight to do so.

    She’s a bully. Plain and simple. She attacked a catchy song with a positive message because that message didn’t apply to her like she felt that it should. Only significantly overweight people like her, people that are in the same situation and know how hard it is for her, are allowed to talk about body issues. I’m 5’4″. It’s well below average for the height for a man, and it sucks sometimes, especially considering it’s not something that I can at least partially remedy with some basic lifestyle changes. But that doesn’t mean I am going to get all pissy if a guy who is say 5’7″ talks about the disadvantages of being below average height. Just because he isn’t AS short as me wouldn’t in any way invalidate his message. Just because Meghan is a healthy weight that is portrayed as overweight by the media, and Jenny is actually legitimately overweight, doesn’t mean that Meghan’s message is wrong. It’s just not a message for Jenny, and that pisses Jenny off.

    Her insecurity caused her to lash out at someone else, bullying 101.

    August 29, 2014
    • At this point I’m questioning your reading comprehension skills or possibly your motives for these comments.

      She didn’t say Jennifer Lawrence couldn’t talk about body image. She pointed out that Jennifer Lawrence acting like she’s 500 pounds when she’s probably a size 4 at most is disingenuous and that is true. The way JL and her fans talk about her body, you would think the woman was morbidly obese. She isn’t.

      If she merely spoke about being a 2 or 4 rather than a 00 in Hollywood and the implications of that, you might have a point. But that isn’t what she does. And that isn’t what is going on in this song.

      But I’m sure JL and this singer (sorry, can’t recall her name without looking up) are bawling in their cereal over these posts.

      You don’t know what the word means and you, along with many other people, dilute its meaning and its impact by using it in this way. Stop it.

      August 29, 2014
  37. Taylor Huston
    Taylor Huston

    You can feign anger and ‘question’ it all you want, doesn’t make it any less true.

    Jenny took the time to tear down something that someone else made that had a positive message, because that positive message didn’t apply to her the way she thought it should. So rather than dealing with her own issues and putting forth the effort improve them, she lashed out at someone else as a coping mechanism.

    Bullying, plain and simple, regardless of how you try and twist it.

    August 29, 2014
    • You’re cute the way you accuse everyone else of doing what you’re doing. How’s that working for you?

      August 29, 2014
      • Taylor Huston
        Taylor Huston

        Bullying is attacking someone as a mask for your own insecurities. I am in no way doing this. I am not an overweight teenage girl. The song doesn’t apply to me. I have no personal stake in it, nor does calling Jenny on it deflect from any insecurities I may have.

        Bullying would be if I wrote a negative review of one of Jenny’s books as a way to deal with my own issues about being a failed writer or something. Attacking someone else to avoid dealing with a personal issue.

        Which is irrelevant, even if I was the most hypocritical person in the world, it wouldn’t make my argument any less valid. It’s called ad hominem, and it’s the laziest of all logical fallacies.

        https://yourlogicalfallacyis.com/

        August 29, 2014
        • Lieke
          Lieke

          So, it’s only bullying if you’re insecure? That’s just bullshit. Bullying is about the act, not about the underlying motivation of the act.

          Your point seems to be that because Jenny is overweight any opinion she has about anything to do with weight stems from her ‘issues’ with her own weight and that makes anything negative she has to say bullying? I think – again – that this is bullshit.

          Your posts here are a collection of condescending, insulting, hypocritical bullshit.

          August 30, 2014
    • JennyTrout
      JennyTrout

      You need to stop acting like you know me and can analyze my thoughts. It’s getting grosser and grosser, and I don’t want it here.

      August 29, 2014
      • Taylor Huston
        Taylor Huston

        More and more gross*. You’re supposed to be a writer you should know better.

        I don’t have to know your thoughts to analyze you. You’re and overweight girl who writes blog articles complaining about other people not being fat enough to talk about body issues. Doesn’t exactly take a PhD in psych to figure out the motivations behind said posts.

        August 29, 2014
        • Taylor Huston
          Taylor Huston

          Don’t spew out negativity into the world if you can’t handle people calling you out on it.

          August 29, 2014
          • JennyTrout
            JennyTrout

            This has nothing to do with taking what I dish out, this has to do with my general mistrust of people who spit comment after comment after being told that I’m not going to agree with them, which is what you’re doing now. I had people threaten my life because I wrote about this song, and you’re leaving comments one after another, escalating in hostility. I specifically referenced the creepy behavior of people stanning for this song in this post that you’re now exhibiting the same behavior on. It’s not cool and you need to step away.

            August 29, 2014
  38. Taylor Huston
    Taylor Huston

    As for my motivations, they are simple. I try to do something every day to decrease worldsuck.

    Meghan’s song, which in no way actually applies to me, was a nice, catchy positive message that applied to a lot of people, and didn’t hurt anyone. Emphasis on the word positive.

    Jenny’s response to that was a negative response because that message didn’t apply to her and that made her angry, didn’t fit her personal, biased definition of who should and should not be allowed to talk about body images. Emphasis on the word negative.

    My motivation is simple, when I see someone attacking something positive with something negative, I call them out on it. We should all be trying to make the world a better place, not tearing each other down.

    August 29, 2014
    • “Meghan’s song, which in no way actually applies to me, was a nice, catchy positive message that applied to a lot of people, and didn’t hurt anyone. Emphasis on the word positive.”

      It was positive if you are a woman on the heavier side.

      However, if you are on the thinner side, it was negative and insulting. But, you know, that’s OK. It’s super important to tear down one kind of woman to make another kind of woman feel better about herself. There’s also nothing wrong with the saying, “Real men like curved. Only dogs like bones.”

      That in no way is insulting to thin women or men who happen to be attracted to them. Not at all. It’s only positive. You’re right. I’ve totally seen the light!

      But I’m one of those “skinny bitches” and apparently my fiance is a “dog,” so what do I know? Nothing wrong with the song. Nothing at all.

      August 29, 2014
      • Taylor Huston
        Taylor Huston

        “Real men like curved. Only dogs like bones.” so your accusing a song of having a negative message by using a quote that isn’t in said song? …k.

        It was a song to the millions of healthy, attractive girls out there who don’t feel attractive. It isn’t a song for unhealthily skinny girls any more so then it was a song for unhealthily overweight girls.

        Super skinny girls git into two categories.
        1: Ones that know they are hot and have the self confidence to back it up because they already have millions of songs, movies and advertisements telling them so. They don’t need this song, they are doing fine.
        2: Ones that, despite the fact that they are skinny, don’t believe it, don’t think they are skinny enough because of the unrealistic photoshopped standards they see every day, and have just as many body issues as slightly overweight girls. This song clearly also applies to those girls, giving them the same positive message.

        It’s a song from a girl who is a healthy weight but probably has body issues due to unrealistic expectations put forth by the media, for girls who are a healthy weight but probably have body issues due to unrealistic expectations put forth by the media.

        It’s not meant to apply to EVERYONE, and if you’re not someone it’s meant to apply to you shouldn’t get upset that it doesn’t apply to you, which is exactly what Jenny got upset in the first place.

        August 29, 2014
        • Lieke
          Lieke

          Let’s come at this from your angle. I happen to have a healty weight. I sometimes feel fat. I’m not fat. So, this song is for me, according to you.

          I think this song is catchy is hell. Seriously, I’ve been humming it for days now. I also think its message blows. The song may be trying to send a positive message, but it fails spectacularly. I think it sends a crap message to skinny women, to women with a healthy weight and to overweight women.

          I’m not upset about the song not applying to me, so tell me why I think this song sucks, wise man. Tell me of my self-esteem issues. Maybe throw something in there about my grammar too and how intelligent I clearly am not? I can’t wait.

          August 30, 2014
          • I am quite certain no one here is nearly as intelligent as he thinks he is.

            August 30, 2014
          • Taylor Huston
            Taylor Huston

            Maybe you don’t like it because you have bad taste?

            Its impossible to make something that everyone is going to like. 7 billion people in the planet.

            But there’s a difference between not personally liking something, and feeling so insecure that you feel the need to go out of your way to tear it down.

            I don’t like mustard. I’m not out writing bitchy blog posts going on and on about how mustard is the Hitler of condiments.

            August 30, 2014
          • Lieke
            Lieke

            Mustard is not spreading the message that skinny women are bitches and that it’s okay to have curves because guys like women with curves. Otherwise, I’d have a problem with mustard too.

            I’m surprised it took you so long to bring up Hitler. Jenny should really stop saying that ‘All about that bass’ is the Hitler of songs. Except, she didn’t.

            August 31, 2014
          • JennyTrout
            JennyTrout

            Until “All About That Bass” somehow kills eleven million people, I probably won’t be comparing it to Hitler. Even then, the method of killing would have to be incredibly specific.

            August 31, 2014
    • Lieke
      Lieke

      Oh, do shut up. There’s nothing positive about your posts here. You’re accusing Jenny of being a bully when all she did was critique a song that had a questionable message. Plus, you keep insisting that she has self-esteem issues. Yeah, you’re so positive and the vibe you’re sending it is super positive too. You’re full of it.

      August 30, 2014
  39. Taylor Huston
    Taylor Huston

    Getting all bent out of shape about a perfectly innocent song that is at least TRYING to portray a much needed positive message to young girls.

    Meanwhile this has almost 100-million views.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LDZX4ooRsWs

    Methinks you guys’s priorities are a little off.

    August 29, 2014
    • Dude, seriously — a life. Get one.

      August 29, 2014
      • Taylor Huston
        Taylor Huston

        Kudos on that intelligent, well thought out retort. You truly are a wordsmith.

        August 29, 2014
    • Lieke
      Lieke

      Now you’re telling us what we should be paying attention to? No, thanks.

      August 30, 2014
      • The irony is that he doesn’t see that Niki’s song and Meghan’s song are saying exactly the same thing. Niki’s just more honest, blunt and vulgar in here message.

        August 30, 2014
        • Lieke
          Lieke

          Hi Renee, yup to all you said.

          I’m just so over being told what I can and cannot be upset about. It’s the lamest go-to response. ‘You’re upset about that? But (I think) that there’s nothing wrong with that. You should be upset about THIS. Blah blah priorities, because clearly your puny brain can only be concerned about one thing. Also, this thing I’m upset about is obviously much worse, so that thing you’re upset about is fine.’

          Seriously, fuck that noise.

          August 30, 2014
        • Taylor Huston
          Taylor Huston

          You’re right. Both songs are clearly sending the exact same message to insecure, impressionable teenage girls.

          August 30, 2014
          • Larissa
            Larissa

            I’m with you on this Taylor. “Anaconda” is far more offensive and negative in every imaginable way and yet there have been two lengthy posts attacking this mostly-positive song instead.

            Also I agree that Jenny’s message sounds a little defensive and similar to bullying. It doesn’t matter what size or shape a person is, everyone has insecurities about their body, whether those insecurities come from how it looks or how it works (or doesn’t work). Because of this, there ought to be no restrictions on who can share their feelings about their own body or about society’s skewed perceptions of beauty. When someone tries to police another person’s right to express themselves, that is ALWAYS bullying.

            We do of course police the way in which they go about expressing those feelings, but only for the sake of public decency. Miss Traynor’s song has far less to offend our sensibilities than Miss Minaj’s vile lap dance set to one of the world’s most vile and lust-driven songs.

            Yes the “Bass” song would be better off without the “skinny bitches” line. But only because of the profanity. I do not think that whoever wrote the lyrics meant that line to mean “skinny women, who are all bitches” but rather “bitches who happen to be skinny.” I believe that that part of the song is directed towards all those women who sneer at the rest of us who for one reason or another, are not rail-thin. They perceive themselves superior because of their more generous genetics or their extreme self-control and discipline, and are happy to tell the rest of us so.. only in not so many words. This is the only part of the song which anyone can rightly take issue with, but that would still based on the lyrics’ possibly-misunderstood meaning.

            What Jenny doesn’t seem to realize is that she is just like those “bitches who happen to be skinny” except that she is on the opposite end of the spectrum…. “An overly-critical and outspoken woman who happens to be overweight.”

            I am not obese, but am not at the most healthy weight for my frame. Luckily (?) for me I can blame most of the weight on fertility medications, which have given me everything they’re supposed to except a pregnancy. But I do not attack (verbally or otherwise, publicly or privately) women who for whatever reason are able to conceive so easily. I’m sure they have their own grievances about their bodies and may have reason to be jealous in some way of what I have. And I value whatever positive contributions they make to the world – just as long as those contributions are not lewd and profane. They do not need to apply directly to me to be of worth, or to be considered uplifting and positive.

            September 1, 2014
          • JennyTrout
            JennyTrout

            “When someone tries to police another person’s right to express themselves, that is ALWAYS bullying.”

            Are you kidding me right now? The level of self-awareness in some people’s children, I swear to G.

            September 1, 2014
  40. […] positivity by skinny-shaming and framing women’s value in terms of their desirability to men. Jenny Trout has already done a great job pointing out how flipping those lyrics to a male performer makes them super objectifying and […]

    July 15, 2016

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