The War on Obesity?

It’s no secret that Americans are experiencing higher rates of obesity than ever before.  According to the CDC, 35.7% of American adults are currently obese.  There have been numerous efforts to take on this obesity issue, for example the ‘Let’s Move’ initiative championed by Mrs. Obama, and New York City Mayor Bloomberg’s controversial 16-ounce cap on sweetened beverages.

Last week the obesity story was that of news anchor, Jennifer Livingston, who fired back at a viewer who sent her an e-mail chastising her for being overweight and not a “suitable example for this community’s young people, girls in particular.”  Ms. Livingston addressed the e-mail on-air and turned the situation into an opportunity to raise awareness about bullying, especially as it relates to those struggling with weight issues.  As Ms. Livingston stated, “If you are at home and you are talking about the fat news lady, guess what? Your children are probably going to go to school and call someone fat.”

Obviously shaming people like Ms. Livingston for their weight struggles is not an effective way to address America’s growing weight problem.  The Internet has opened the door for people to use their voice, which can lead to cyberbullying.  In this instance, the bullying took place as a simple email.  What do you think are the best current or proposed initiatives that could help prevent cyberbullying?  Please share in a comment below.

Andrea Perri

Project Specialist

Campaign Consultation, Inc.

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