Wear Your Rights! (No Fat Chicks, Please)

For what seems like the umpty-gazillionth time, I just got an email from the Feminist Majority Foundation exhorting me to Wear My Rights! by shopping at the FMF store, where I can show my feminist spirit by parting with some of my hard-earned dollars and splashing their logo across my chest in eye-catching pink.

But apparently only if my feminist spirit is housed in a body of, shall we say, a certain size.

A size which *I* have not been since my sophomore year of college, I might add.

A quick tally of the 22 items of adult clothing offered for sale there shows that of those, only 5, or less than 25%, are available in anything over an XL, and those are all "unisex" items. If you want some of the more "feminine" shirts, like the pink "Radical Feminist" baseball tee, or the black "VOTE! as if your life depended on it" fitted tee, no dice.

Our only options are to get the floppy unisex tees that hide our zafig shapes, and even then, if we need something more than a 3x, we're outta luck.

Fat chicks apparently aren't supposed to want cute, form-fitting feminist-wear. Good heavens -- we might make the cause look bad. *eyeroll*

Well, here's a newsflash. I'm fat, and I'm a feminist, and I'm not buying anything else from the FMF store until they get some cute logo-wear in larger sizes.

Don't get me wrong; I love the work they do, and I'll still send them money and support their causes -- I'm just not going to be a walking billboard for them until they decide that fat chicks are feminists, too.


Hope you sent this to them as well

You're a better man person than I am. I wouldn't send them a plug nickel until they got this complaint handled.

I first brought this to their attention back in '05...

I wrote them and said:

"Dear FMF,

What will it take for you to start offering items like the "Radical Feminist" baseball tee in plus sizes?

Feminists come in all shapes and sizes, and for better or worse, now that the "average" dress size for a woman in the US is a size 14, I wish you would mirror that reality by carrying more items in larger sizes, so that myself and my more zaftig feminist sisters could show our pride.

"Fat Chicks Are Feminists, Too"

Their entirely inadequate response was:

"The shirt that you pointed out is being discontinued so we do not have any larger sizes in it left, we are just trying to sell through what we have. When we place orders for new shirts we always order larger sizes. The fitted style shirts largest size is an XL, but we order unisex versions of the shirt that come in up to 2XL and are much larger fitting then the fitted shirts. I am sorry we did not have your size in what you wanted at this time. Thanks,"

To which I have replied:
"The shirt that you pointed out is being discontinued so we do not have any larger sizes in it left..."

You *never* carried it in anything larger than an XL. Of the seventeen shirts in your store, only two styles come in size XXL. *That's* what I'm writing to you about.

Again, when the average dress size of a woman in the US is now a 14, this seems very short-sighted, not to mention disappointing in an organization that claims to be "dedicated to women's equality, reproductive health, and non-violence. In all spheres, FMF utilizes research and action to empower women economically, socially, and politically" (unless the women are fat, apparently).

I would love to buy some feminist shirts for myself and my friends, and I'd love to do it at your store so I could support the good work that you do. But I can't do that if you don't carry anything that fits us.


And I never heard back from them again. Leading me to conclude that they really don't care about fat feminists at all and wish we would just go away, or barf ourselves into thinness or something.

I'm a tiny, tiny, man with similar complaints

If I walk into a mens wear store, the salesmen won't even talk to me. I can't buy a pair of pants that doesn't need to be taken up three inches in the leg. I can't buy an off the rack suit jacket because they make me look like a linebacker.

Somehow I'm just below the bar of what every single popular American clothing manufacturer (J-Crew, Gap, Urban Outfitters, etc...) considers to be the shallow end of the scale of EVERY SINGLE Modern American Man.

Anyway, I commiserate...

I hear ya

I had a male friend awhile back who was short and small-boned. He once told me that he often had to buy his clothes in the "boys" section of stores. :/


Preach on, sister

Be the change you wish to see in the world. --Gandhi


They can't ignore us forever... can they?



And I've started seeing more decent clothes in real sizes recently. And at decent prices too.

I think they're realizing that real women don't look like Barbie, or Paris Hilton, and we don't want to dress like hoochie teenagers (h/t to my aunt) or our grandmothers, either.

I'm overweight by any doctor's scale. I've lost 50 pounds in the past year and a half - but I'm still overweight. I am happy where I am, and I like my body and my curves. So if I lose more because I've changed my diet, so be it. If I don't, so be it. I can't shave off the hip bones, and those "appendages" on top aren't going anywhere either.

Be curvy and proud.

Be the change you wish to see in the world. --Gandhi

...and you are the epitome of cool in Katie's eyes

All she could talk about was your jacket and your buttons. Both she and Emily went home and pulled out their button collections and have them on their pocketbooks and hoodies. I gave them all of mine from college - except my political buttons. I'm keeping those.

Vote Democratic! The ass you save may be your own.


I would have given them peace buttons if she'd said something. I'll mail some to you if you email me your address. Katie is one pretty cool chick herself. I like her a lot.

Be the change you wish to see in the world. --Gandhi

She would be thrilled!

I'll email it to you.

Robin Hayes lied. Nobody died, but thousands of folks lost their jobs.

Vote Democratic! The ass you save may be your own.

Hear, hear

"Be curvy and proud."

You said it. Good for you for your weight loss!

Shopping is still its own form of hell, isn't it?

This is a bit of an open letter I wrote awhile back:

I, and other fat chicks like me, am fat all over. Not fat everywhere except my upper arms. I don't want to show off my flab, no matter where it is! I'm not going to buy your cute pastel wife-beaters, your tight little shirts with cup sleeves, or most any other tops with sleeves that don't come down most of the way to my elbow.

And please, please, PLEASE--no more shirts with horizontal stripes!! Do you actually even sell any of those??? Any moron knows that horizontal stripes make you look wider. Do you know any REGULAR-size ladies who want to look bigger? Because I sure don't. Yet every single time I walk into a plus-size area, I'm confronted with nasty horizontal stripes: Hecht's, Belk's, Dillard's, it matters not. They all have the dreaded horizontal stripes. Did you find some sofa covering material on sale and buy it all up, or do you just think that because we're fat we have no fashion sense?

Another thing: I'm fat, not a child. Sometimes I just want a cotton sleep shirt, a jersey or a jacket. Period. Not one with Winnie the Pooh, or Mickey Mouse, or God help me, Tweety Bird saying something smart-ass.

Bathing suits: this could be a letter unto itself. I'll confine my comments to this: if diagonal stripes are thinning, then why do they stop on the sides of the suit? Does my back not need slimming, too?

One size fits all: the big lie, and we all know it. Why not say "fits up to a size 12," and be done with it?

Lastly, why don't you get some actual plus-sized models and clothes dummies? All your ads feature stick-thin women, even in fat-chick specialty stores like Lane Bryant and Avenue. Just stop it, OK? I'm not stupid enough to think that wearing the clothes that the models have on will magically melt the extra 40 pounds off me.

You go!

One of my most cherished pictures is one of my grandmother, my mother, my sister, and me standing in front of my grandmother's house, shortly before my grandmother's death. My sister and I were both in college. My mother would have been about my age or a little older (late 40's.) My grandmother was in her 70's.

If you cover up the tops of our bodies, you can't tell which woman is which. It's just one round hip after another. Lovely.

Be the change you wish to see in the world. --Gandhi