Cheers! To Jennifer Livingston, the LaCrosse, Wisconsin news anchor who called out the guy who wrote her that horrible e-mail regarding her weight. He chided her for not being an appropriate role model for young girls. To this I say, “What a load of Hooey!” What? There aren’t enough thin, blonde women with perfect teeth and tight asses. Yeah. Young girls need to see more of them on television.
I’ll wager a bet that this woman has given hope to at least one overweight young woman hoping to break into the television news game. Because she is such a rarity. You don’t often see morning show hosts, in any market, who are not a size 6.
I had to scratch my head when I discovered that the guy who wrote the e-mail, Kenneth Krause, works as a security guard. I’m not knocking security guards, I mean I’m just a lowly waitress, for God’s sake, but I wouldn’t necessarily run over to the bank or to the mall to seek the counsel of a security guard if I was struggling with the concept of what a role model was.
Several days after the fact, Mr. Krause apologized. He’s now trying to say that he wrote the e-mail to be helpful to her; and has offered to assist her with an exercise and weight loss regimen. Yeah, right. Are we supposed to believe that his motivation for his vitriolic attack was his concern for her? I don’t believe it for a minute. My understanding is that he, himself, struggled with obesity. (Information that he revealed after the fact.) If he truly wanted to help her, I would think he would have started with that particular part of his story in his original e-mail. Never did he make any offer to help her. Instead, he essentially demanded that she either lose weight or leave television.
Who the hell is he to criticize her for the number that she puts up on a scale? She didn’t write a diet book. She’s not an exercise guru. Alternately, my understanding is that she is not running around saying, “Big is beautiful, girls!” She is not encouraging women, young or old, to look like her. She is just a woman who does her job, and seems to be, a few crackpots notwithstanding, accepted for who she is, warts and all. I think that’s a good thing.
I think her choice to go public with his e-mail was courageous. Confronting a bully while discussing, what I imagine would be, her Achilles’ heel, that’s the cloth role models are cut from. It occurs to me that Mattel might want to give Barbie a friend, a curvier friend; they could call her “Jennifer”. Because very few young women out there have a shot at Barbie’s measurements. I will guarantee you that there are far more who will grow into women whose imperfect bodies will more closely resemble Jennifer Livingston’s body. (Particularly after three kids, but stretch marks on an overweight Barbie might be too much to hope for.)
photo credit: ebeanstalk.com