There is a story out about how some schools are eliminating recess due to the demands of recent legislation. (Click here to read the story) I certainly think its a shame that "unstructured play time" is starting to become a thing of the past. Its not hard to see its value in developing social skills and friendships as well as encouraging creativity and imagination. A lot of kids just don't get that after school and need the time to play with children their age during the school day. You'd think all that would be a reason to bemoan the loss of recess.
Nope. What's the final point made in the story? And on a radio mention of the story I heard this morning? "What about the fat children?" Thankfully, I see that others are understanding the more important issues, but can it be any surprise that some see this as an opening to bemoan the existance of chubby kids and condemn schools for contributing to their fatness?
"What about the fat children?" is an increasing cry from fat bashers and its one I fear many in fat acceptance don't care to confront. Due to failures to educate people about the key points of fat acceptance, I've seen a number of people who claim to believe in fat acceptance, but who don't think that acceptance should extend to children. The continue to hold onto the notion that fat is bad, and while its okay for them to ignore that, they can hardly suggest that children should be subjected to it. It is a double shame because increasingly, children are the primary target for public fat bashing. As if they didn't get enough of that at recess?
Of course, its a wonderful self-fufilling prophecy for the anti-fat crusaders. Start going after children. Frame every issue in terms of its effects on childhood "obesity". Encourage intervention for "at risk" kids. As in, kids who ARE NOT FAT but who apparently need to diet and have issues about their bodies and eating anyway. Even if there wasn't anything remotely resembling a crisis to begin with, they create it by forcing weight loss diets on younger and younger kids. After all, not only do most diets fail, the overwhelming majority of diets result in more weight being gained than was lost in the first place. If there were increasing rates of fat children, there will be thanks to the intervention of the fat bashers.
Everyone should grow up free to let their body be what it will be without hysterical fits over the fact that some kid has a belly. They are children. They should be able to have fun and enjoy themselves. That's why we should preserve recess and its why we should oppose this latest front in the "war" on fatness.