Weighty Issues…


Women are like the democrats.

No matter how much good you do, how much you care about making life better for all people no matter race, religion, sex or socio-economic standing, how proficient you are at multi-tasking, you are always a target of criticism and not as good at spinning fact and fiction as white middle-aged male republicans.

I recently read an article in the Economist pertaining to obesity prevalent among Arab women.

The story zeroed in on why women are so much “fatter” than men in Arab countries.

Titled, “Why women are fatter than men in the Arab world,” the article attempted to lay the blame primarily on cultural restrictions, but they failed to do so with understanding and compassion.

Enas Taleb. Photo:News Times.

The Economist used an image of Iraqi actress and talk show host, Enas Taleb, as an example of a “fat” woman in the Arab world.

Taleb, 42, is a veteran of Iraqi TV dramas who began her career at the age of 16.

From 1996 to 2002, she was constantly on TV shows playing the main protagonist. She has appeared in ads and music videos in Iraq over the past two decades and is admired and respected for her on screen performances and down-to-earth offscreen persona.

The Iraqi actress says she is suing the Economist newspaper for using her photo to illustrate the alleged viewpoint that Arab women are “fatter” than men.

Taleb said that the image was used out of context without her permission and violated her privacy. She also claimed it had been photoshopped.

Interesting that the Economist, known for its liberal opinions, pricey subscriptions, depth of coverage and claims to having an influential audience of prominent, highly educated business leaders and policy-makers would ever write such a sexist, racist article.

This is not a publication synonymous with gossip and smut like the National Enquirer and Star Magazine.

If this topic must be discussed why wouldn’t they come solely from the perspective that Arab woman are so restricted in their rights, not allowed to exercise in public or go to gyms, that their lives are spent indoors since school is now banned in some Arab countries and expensive in others. In countries where women can work, the pay is very low and they are often harassed.

I know I would stay inside and probably feast on treats to fill the void and feed the frustration over the oppressive state of my life as a woman.

Are Arab men so fit? What is going on underneath the billowing robes? How many double chins are masked by the extensive, overgrown beards?

Why is the word fat even bandied about?

One can discuss the plight of the Arab woman due to her restrictive and oppressive life, but why would a sophisticated publication pile on an already harassed demographic.

I feel so fortunate to come and go as I please, but American women are fat shamed, as well.

Have you seen our male politicians physiques or been to the beach lately to have a gander at the post pandemic male bod and yet many American men only want to date model types, leaving women in this country really screwed up about their body image.

We should all be concerned with being healthy.

All of us should also prioritize kindness, patience, acceptance and less hatred and judgment.

A shout out to Lizzo, a talented, successful, smart female role model who is twerking feverishly to make big, beautiful and nondiscriminatory.

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