An Oregon teen had an epic response to a classmate who called plus-size models "disgusting" and "obese."
Anna Sweetland's health class was discussing body image in advertising when her peer made his criticisms.
"Target is starting a body positive campaign, and are also using 'plus-size' models, which is disgusting," Sweetland's classmate commented, Bustle reports. "There's no problem with not being ashamed of your body, but it's an entirely different thing when you're obese. The problem with campaigns like these is that they encourage obesity, unhealthy habits, and they say that you'll be happy no matter your size. This is wrong, and no one wants to look at an obese model."
To say that the male student's comments rubbed Sweetland the wrong way is an understatement. The 16-year-old revealed to Yahoo Style that she struggled with obesity during her first year of high school, which is why she was personally offended by her peer's remarks.
"I would like to start by saying that calling anyone's body 'disgusting,' isn't really called for, and you should be careful with your choice in adjectives," she wrote. "I agree with you that obesity is a bad thing, and it is a problem that our world is dealing with right now. However, I do not believe that plus-size models are contributing to this disease."
"Not all plus-size model are obese or unhealthy. It is possible to simply be larger just from genetics," Sweetland continued.
To back up her statement, the teen referenced plus-size model and body-positive queen Ashley Graham, who appeared on "Good Morning America" in 2015 and shared the results of a fitness test, which proved she had normal blood pressure and cholesterol levels.
"We need to represent every body in the media because everyone needs to be represented. If 'thin models promote anorexia' and 'plus-size models promote obesity,' who is going to be portrayed in the media?" the 16-year-old asked.
Sweetland then noted that even if an average-sized person was promoted in the media, it would still spark controversy over "what the average person is supposed to look like."
"Lastly, I would to like to inform you that your statement saying, 'Nobody wants to look at an obese model,' is false," she concluded. "You know who wants to see a plus-size model? The 67 per cent of women in America who are plus-sized, and want to open a magazine and see somebody that looks just as beautiful as they do."
Sweetland certainly schooled her classmate, and she's right about why seeing plus-size models in the media is so important. Not only do they redefine beauty standards, but they normalize the fact that every body is different and everyone should be accepting of that.
Besides Ashley Graham, other notable plus-size, body-positive role models include Tess Holliday, Philomena Kwao and Iskra Lawrence.
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