Here's the email I sent as a result of receiving the spam I wrote about here.
To: email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: Offensive spam sent via your mailing list I am writing to object to the spam I received via your mailing list last night, "Stop hunger by losing weight." I am referring to it as spam because I don't see any notice in the mailing that the workshop is taking place at Kepler's or that there is any book associated with the workshop that Kepler's is selling. I have already removed my name from your mailing list, and I plan to take my book-buying business elsewhere, unless I receive assurance that the mailing list will be used in the future only to promote books, and events sponsored by Kepler's that are clearly labeled as such. I'm annoyed by the spam and I am also offended by the workshop description. Following is an explanation why the workshop description is offensive. I am all for mindfulness and have a mindfulness practice myself, and I am certainly in favor of charitable donations. But the subject line "Stop hunger by losing weight" and the web site name "Pounds for Poverty" implies to me that fat people are primarily to blame for world hunger and poverty. Fat people do not do any harm to other people by being fat. Studies show that fat people do not as a group eat more than thin people. Fat people do not consume other things more than thin people either -- in fact most fat people are poor. Many fat people are not white and fat-hatred therefore acts as a socially acceptable form of racism. And a great many people who think they are too fat are not fat, which leads to eating disorders such as anorexia and bulemia, which disproportionately affect teen and young adult women. There is a moral panic in this country where fat people are wrongly made into symbols for forms of consumption that *do* harm and waste resources. Workshop descriptions that associate fatness with overconsumption encourage this distraction from the real problem, and encourage prejudice and discrimination against fat people. I would be all for a workshop that teaches people forms of mindfulness that lead them to turn their Mercedes and SUVs and cosmetic surgery and other expensive "empty consumption" habits to poverty relief. I think that would generate a lot more money for poverty relief than a weight loss program. And in San Mateo/Palo Alto where most people are rich and thin, it might well attract a larger audience. -- Stef ** email@example.com ** ** cat-and-dragon.com/stef ** firecat.livejournal.com ** ** it works better for me to moderate the stress in my life and supply plenty of relaxation time all along than to accumulate stress and then take allegedly healing vacations. i started to think whether there wasn't such a thing as yo-yo healing, and whether it wasn't just as bad for one, maybe, as yo-yo-dieting. -- piranha