A snotty social justice zealot by the name of Stephanie Abraham recently penned a column for Ms. Magazine asking the question that’s on everyone’s lips: When Will Wonder Woman be a Fat, Femme Woman of Color?
White supremacists would shit themselves in outrage had Wonder Woman been cast as a woman of color, she snivels (never mind that as an Israeli, Gal Gadot is, in fact, a woman of color).
She’s just too beautiful. She struts like a model on a catwalk. The only women on Themyscira are tall, athletic, and attractive, she screeches. And that’s just not fair, according to Abraham, who apparently believes that a hero or heroine must be allowed the title without effort or exertion. Like a typical cultural Marxist he seems to believe that “body positivity” entitles one to accomplishments they did not earn.
My friend Jonathan begs to differ.
Especially with the body positivity movement gaining steam, the film could have spotlighted female warriors with fat, thick and short body types. While people have said that warriors can’t be fat, some of our best paid male athletes are, particularly linebackers on the football field, and no one doubts their physical strength.
I had been reading your work and you were doing decently until I stumbled across this. Right there you display a gross degree of ignorance about the profession of arms. Enough so that it leaves your readers woefully misguided. Fortunately, such ignorance can be overcome through education, and I would hate to think you’re in any way opposed to gaining further light and knowledge through education.
The body positivity movement.
You mean that collection of screaming harpies who shriek as though misers losing coins when told that they are grossly overweight and need to take corrective action? You mean the women who refuse to fix themselves? Who willfully deliberately target fit women and thin women with their shaming campaigns? That movement? The Trigglypuffs of the world?
The Battle of Verdun had momentum. France in 1919 had allies. The 4th Marine Brigade had respect after Belleau Wood, where before it was unwanted as nothing more than stevedores and work details.
body positivity bowel movement has no momentum, no respect, and no allies. It has already been exposed for its mindless pettiness, and become a roundly mocked joke. “Body positivity” is justification for lack of discipline and self control, the lack of will to fix errors within oneself.
Because it’s hard. Anything Tumblristas such as these can do to avoid real work and effort is great. It justifies their existence. Tis better by far to mock Wonder Woman for being “too skinny” than to admit that she has achieved something wonderful and seek to emulate such actions.
“The film could have spotlighted female warriors with fat, thick, and short body types…”
Please feel free to go take a look at the women who compete in Ultimate Fighting. Please tell me what Gina Carano, Ronda Rousey and their peers all have in common. Go take a look at the U.S. Olympic Team, and tell me what those women have in common. How about the U.S. Women’s Soccer Team? Do any of them look fat? One could argue about the weightlifters, but even they are MUSCULAR. Now go look at the U.S. military. Examine the women who’ve had successful careers in armed services. What do they have in common?
This is what’s called a clue. Chew on it. Masticate it. Digest the contents with some finality. All finished? Good. Let’s continue.
Reality is that if you’re fat and a woman, or “thick,” such as Stephanie Abraham suggests, you’re not going to have a successful martial career.
Because you’re expected to meet standards of height, weight, and physical vitality. Now consider what a woman in a warrior culture who trains hard every day to fight will look like. Especially when we consider that they’re wearing arms and armor reminiscent of ancient Greek Hoplites. Even light infantry gear is going to run 20+ pounds. Now try running and marching and fighting in that. How long do you think you’re going to stay fat or thick? I lost 45 pounds in 13 weeks at San Diego MCRD (Recruit LaForce weighed 195 on his first weigh in at MCRD San Diego. He proceeded to drop weight every day of every week because Drill Instructor Sergeants Fischer and Poole were determined to make him strong and fit. At his last weigh in after the Crucible event, he stood 150 lbs. in his government-issued silkies) and there were recruits in my platoon who lost even more weight than I did! Recruit Paul Doe lost over 100! (Paul Doe’s mother didn’t recognize him on Family Day.)
“While people have said that warriors can’t be fat…”
Citations, citations, citations. Citations are important, especially when making such a statement. Every single English teacher I’ve had from my freshman year of High School through what’s now my junior year of college have hammered on that. (Dr. Cheryl Young – God bless that brilliant woman!) Have citations. If you’re going to make a claim, have something to back it up, or don’t say it. We’re going to play along with the rest of this statement though, just to humor you, Steph, because this is a teaching moment.
“…some of our best paid male athletes are [fat]…”
From Forbes list of Highest Paid Athletes 2016 1st through 10th: Cristiano Ronaldo, Lionel Messi, LeBron James, Roger Federer, Kevin Durant, Novak Djokovic, Cam Newton, Phil Mickelson, Jordan Spieth, Kobe Bryant.
Mickelson is the only one I would even consider even close to “fat,” and he’s still a trim looking man out on the course. With the rest, I’ll bet you a month’s pay at the E-4 rate that they’re toned, fit and in extremely good shape for their sport. Given the number of Latina friends I’ve seen swooning over Messi and Ronaldo on social media, I’m going to win that bet.
“…particularly linebackers on the football field, and no one doubts their physical strength.”
I remember when Google was just starting out. In the years since its emergence, we’ve come to add it to our lexicon as both a noun and a verb. Right now we’re going to make use of it and google “NFL Linebackers shirtless.” The first man to appear in the search is Clay Matthews of the Green Bay Packers. He is 6’3″ tall, and weighs in at 250 pounds. He was the first round draft pick out of USC under Pete Carroll. That man could stand in for Chris Hemsworth as Thor. He may not be perfectly toned, but is there any doubt he’s in absolutely outstanding physical shape? If you threw furs on his back and handed him an axe, would he look out of place among Nordic forebears? Not one bit.
Linebackers, mind you, are expected to be quick enough they can catch receivers in the backfield or go head-to-head against halfbacks and running backs – grown men the same size as them who are determined to run that linebacker over like a Panzer IV rolling over the French army in 1940; that linebacker can also be expected to blitz around a wall of linemen and pile drive an opposing quarterback into the turf. Bet your last penny that being fat doesn’t rate anywhere on the list of important traits a linebacker should possess in comparison to strong, motivated, hostile and agile.
You would have done better to select “offensive linemen” or “defensive linemen” if you were trying to suggest “fat,” and yet even there, your claim is invalid. Nate Solder of the New England Patriots weighs more than 320 pounds and stands 6’9”. His hands alone are nearly 10 inches across. He’s a highly paid captain for a Patriots team which in his seven years on the team has twice won Super Bowls. I’ve included a link to video footage of what he looks like while training and playing.
Sorry, but “fat” doesn’t even come into the picture.
You don’t get to where he is by being a fat slob. Team owners don’t tolerate that. They run a business interested in making money, which means winning games. Slobs don’t win professional football games. Slobs darn sure don’t win Super Bowl Rings.
Returning now to your original argument, we’ve established that there is a necessity for peak physical conditioning (and physique follows function), that historically has been necessary for not only athletes, but fighting men.
Where do women come into play with all this? Sage Santangelo.
In 2014, Sage Santangelo was a 2nd LT, USMC and a candidate at the USMC Infantry Officer Course. She, by her own recollection, was in superb shape. “I’ve climbed 10 of 14,000-foot peaks in my home state of Colorado. As an ice hockey goalie for more than a decade, I put myself in the path of pucks flying at 80 mph.” Santangelo is also a ranked Crossfit Competitor. She goes on in an (wholly disrespectful) editorial in the Washington Post about how she was unfairly prepared for the Combat Endurance Test which all Infantry Officer Candidates are expected to pass if they wish to participate in that course. In Santangelo’s class, there were 104 candidates, including four women. Twenty-five men failed that class, as did all four women. That was the first day.
In 2014 Anno Dominus – not Ancient Greece, nor Republican Rome – modern day, 21st century, when we have access to some of the best sports conditioning, modern medicine, modern diet ever seen in human history, Sage Santangelo had everything going for her. And she still could not succeed!
Now, let’s apply this information to an island entirely reminiscent of 8th century BC Greece. Diana of Themyscira has to be in constant training to maintain her performance and strength. She needs every bit of muscle mass she can attain.
Returning to the football player example: I’m 66 inches tall. Nate Solder is more than 80 inches inches tall and built like a demigod. Who has more opportunity for muscle mass? The answer is Nate, who even tipping the scales at 325 in the NFL combine was advised to put on an additional 20 pounds. That’s nearly the birth-weight equivalent of two African elephants!
When a casting director is considering candidates for a particular role, body mass and composition is something that must considered. Who is going to put on muscle mass easier for a role where running around with a sword and shield – Ms. Short-Fat-and-Thick or Ms. Gadot, who is 5’10” and weighs 128? She had to put on 17 pounds of muscle for her role as Diana of Themyscira!
Think that was easy? Think Trigglypuff would be able to attain that goal in the short time allotted? (Let alone fit into the armor and be able to perform the physical feats Gal Gadot did while five months pregnant!)
Not only is your logic faulty, Steph, it has no basis in reality. That sucks, doesn’t it? Go ahead, nod your head and say yes. It hurts doesn’t it?
That’s part of life; we believe something until new evidence is brought to our attention, and we have a choice to make: accept the new evidence and change our views, or ignore the facts and be a miserable, angry shrew because the world and reality don’t conform to your whining. Option two means you remain mired in ignorance of your own doing. Not appealing. Option one hurts though, because you’ve tied important ideals to this concept.
Does admitting that you were wrong make you a bad person? No.
Does changing your behavior to reflect the reality of a given situation make you evil? No.
Are you going to need to examine the beliefs most closely tied to this false belief? Yes.
Is this ‘mansplaining?” No. A fellow woman (such as Nicki) could have explained this to you – and she likely would have done it less kindly than I have, and with a lot more invective.
Before you suggest that I would never talk to a man this way, I want you to understand six very simple words:
I. Am. A. Corporal. Of. Marines.
The list of what I’ll say to the men under my charge can include anything up to and including the words “fix bayonets and take that machine gun covered enemy position.” Do not ever presume I wouldn’t say something hard, difficult or mean to a fellow man. Been there, done that, got the motherfracking tee shirt. And I’d do it again in a heartbeat.
But this is fantasy, Steph would say! Shouldn’t the directors be able to commit handwavium and use magic to change reality?
As a published writer and aspiring author, I can very firmly tell you there comes a point where the reader cannot suspend enough disbelief to take what you write seriously. We, the paying fans, will not be able to overlook 132 kilograms of Rebel Wilson squeezed into a Wonder Woman costume taking down German shock troops in World War I trench fights, or successfully defeating Ares the GOD OF WAR with a sword. Fans will not pay for that unless it’s parody or satire. It will not succeed.
Paul Feig, take note you incompetent putz.
The virtue signaling needs to stop. It’s not helpful. If anything, it will get good women and men hurt or dead in combat zones, as you keep trying to govern reality by false narratives promulgated in cinema. Instead of continuing to spout bad ideas come ask veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan like myself and my brother Marines about what we’ve seen and what we’ve done. Ask us why we have the opinions we do. Listen to what we say and how we say it. Ask us why we’re sarcastic and bitter and cynical. Keep an open mind, no matter what.
And maybe, just maybe, for the first time in your life you’ll learn what tolerance really means.