Gaby Sidibe’s weight defenders are just as horrible as her critics

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Yesterday, I got really pissed off at a diet pill company that was trying to get some extra publicity off of Gaby Sidibe by publicly insulting her and demeaning her talent, saying “The only way you can reach your goal of someday winning that Oscar is by being active, fit and most of all, healthy!” If you wanted to see my defense of Gaby, go here. It was basically like, leave the girl alone, yeah, she should lose some weight, but by calling her out and saying that she can only achieve anything with diet pills and weight loss is idiotic and cheap and insulting.

Anyway, a special interest group has now come to Gaby’s defense, and in my opinion, they made matters worse. The special interest group? The National Association to Advance Fat Acceptance. NAAFA, bitches. Here’s what they had to say:

Gabourey Sidibe might have a weight problem, but it doesn’t mean she’s unhealthy … this according to the National Association to Advance Fat Acceptance (NAAFA). Yes, that’s a real group.

As we first reported, a weight loss company is reaching out to the Oscar-nominated “Precious” star in an effort to help her lose weight and get healthy.

But according to a spokeswoman for NAAFA, being heavy doesn’t always mean being unhealthy. Peggy Howell tells TMZ, “You cannot tell by looking at a person if they are healthy. Fat does not equal disease and thin does not equal healthy.”

Howell also said NAAFA does not encourage people to get fat or stay fat and reminded us, “Achievements come in all sizes.”

[From TMZ]

While I agree with the whole “Fat does not equal disease and thin does not equal healthy” stuff, and I definitely agree with the whole “Achievements come in all sizes” stuff, I still think everyone should all take a break from commenting endlessly on Gaby’s figure. Just because you’re trying to champion her, doesn’t make any less gross and patronizing. And what kills me – every time I think about it, actually – is that Gaby is one of the most confident and positive young women out there. I’m starting to think that people are mad at her for not being all insecure, weak and negative about her weight, or by publicly discussing it in any substantive way. She just seems like, “I’m fabulous, take me as I am or don’t, I don’t care.” And maybe that’s why so many people are using her to make their idiotic points.

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46 Responses to “Gaby Sidibe’s weight defenders are just as horrible as her critics”

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  1. Melanie says:

    If they are trying to Heidi Montage her, I don’t think it will work.

    ~~~~~~NAAFA, bitches~~~~~~~~~~~~~LOL!

  2. Sumodo1 says:

    Both sides are “using her.”

  3. ogechi says:

    ”but by calling her out and saying that she can only achieve anything with diet pills and weight loss is idiotic and cheap and insulting”.


  4. Popcorny says:

    I think she’s beautiful.
    Very unique face, much like captivating art. She radiates good energy.
    Not sexy, but gorgeous nonetheless.
    I wish I didn’t have to add that in there (about not being sexy) but too many folks dismiss one without the other when they are/can be two very different things.
    Also, there is no way that her size is at all healthy, no way.

  5. meme says:

    back away from my man, gabby. Mr. Renner is mine MINE MINE!!!!!!!

  6. girl says:

    I wholeheartedly agree, Kaiser.

  7. bellaluna says:

    ITA, Kaiser. Everyone’s wad is in a knot over her confidence, her healthy sense of self, and they’re pissed because she hasn’t collapsed in a paroxysm of tears, guilt, and public embarrassment. Good for her! Keep it up, girl!

  8. Iggles says:

    Gabourey Sidibe might have a weight problem, but it doesn’t mean she’s unhealthy … this according to the National Association to Advance Fat Acceptance (NAAFA).

    Might? She’s not unhealthy?

    Obesity is not healthy. It puts a lot of stress on your body.

    Fat shaming and discrimination is not OK.
    Claiming Obesity is fine is not OK either.

    @ Kaiser:
    “I’m starting to think that people are mad at her for not being all insecure, weak and negative about her weight, or by publicly discussing it in any substantive way.”

    I agree with you. It’s getting ugly because the haters are mad that they failed to ruffle her feathers.

  9. Pont Neuf says:

    To be honest, I don’t see why NAAFA’s points have made anything worse. While I find their mission to be a bit bizarre (let’s be honest: it’s not as if overweight people were being driven out of their hometowns by angry mobs), they are right in everything they have said. Achievements do come in all sizes and it is possible to be somewhat overweight and be healthier than people who are unhealthily thin, or skinny fat.

    Also, while I find Miss Sidibe to be a very good actress and I’m glad that she is confident and happy with who she is, the truth is that she is unhealthily overweight. She doesn’t just have 10lb of excess weight; she is morbidly obese, and that is dangerous no matter how anyone may try to deny it.

    Also, this is downplaying the fact that many overweight people do suffer from emotional problems which have to be resolved, because they cause individuals to suffer terribly.

    As a last comment, would anyone be hysterical about Gaby Sidibe’s weight if she were a man? I have never heard comments such as “oh, John Goodman would have been soooo much more successful if he wasn’t so fat. He is just the typical (insert inappropriate, strongly derogatory ethnic epithet here) fatty who looks like crap. Can’t he show that he deserves his fame at least a little?”.

    Well, I’ll stand down from my soap box, now…

  10. ien says:

    this is just wrong.
    the girl is obese yes, we see it, she sees it.
    what does her weight have to do with her talent though? the girl was just nominated for an oscar, can we let her celebrate that??

    i think it’s strange that people are ganging up on her about her weight but rarely do they judge the other side of the spectrum of the actresses that are extremely underweight. THAT side of the spectrum is even encouraged.

    it’s not ok to talk about weight/bodies imo.

  11. Mr. Reality Check says:

    Yeah blah blah blah she’s a sweetheart/actress but dood c’mon if you didn’t know who she was and saw her sitting at a restaurant eating or walking down the street you’d be looking in disgust. Stop the B.S. and be real. This girl is morbidly OBESE and that shit is NOT a good look nor is healthy.

  12. lucy2 says:

    I think they’re also trying to use her to push their own agenda. Not AS bad as the diet pill co., but not great either. Let her be – she’s not clueless, if and when she’s ready to get healthier, that’s her choice, and no one else’s business.

    I also agree with Kaiser that people are mad she is so confident. As I said on another thread, Kirstie Alley’s entire career is now based on her weight, and any time a celeb has that issue, it’s pretty much all they talk about. I think it’s easier to feel superior to someone when they’re crying on Oprah or whatever about their struggles, whereas Gabby is confident and happy and enjoying herself. Some people can’t accept that an overweight person would feel that way.

    Pont Neuf, good point about the men – there are plenty of actors who are a bit pudgy all the way up to some who are very heavy, and they don’t get half the crap that women get.

  13. Wow says:

    It’s her life. If she wants to stay obese and risk her health… It’s on her. I’d love her to be around for a long time. Being that obese is not good for her heart, but again it’s her body.

    One can’t make an obese person lose weight and you can’t make an anorexic eat. They have to want to do those things for themselves. If they don’t want to, then the consequences from that are theirs alone.

    I wish her luck either way because I like her presence in the industry. And she has nice taste in men. 😉

  14. Justalark says:

    Gaby is a very likeable young woman, and she appears to be mentally healthy with strong self-esteem. However, from a physical standpoint, no one could believe that it’s healthy to be morbidly obese. Anything–including eating (or non-eating)–in extreme excess is bad for the body. As far back as medieval times, gluttony was considered to be one of the seven “deadly” sins, and for good reason!

  15. KrispyKreme says:

    @Wow, consider the health costs (of obesity) that we *all* pay; then it’s not just “on her.” When my health care costs and insurance premiums are increased in order to defray the treatment costs resulting from others’ poor health choices (be it overeating, smoking, alcoholism, what have you), yeah, you bet I’m gonna have something to say about it. And it goes something like this: “Put down the doughnut and pick up the running shoes.”

  16. FrenchToast says:

    She has such a sweet face. But I can’t believe NAAFA exists. True: not all fat people are very sick-YET, and not all thin people are healthy. So what? What a pointless organization. Having an organization telling people to be nice to fat people is like having mommy turn up at school to do that to the bullies. You can’t tell mean people to be nice to anyone.

    But with all the comfort eating Gaby obviously does-so much she’s putting her health in danger-I doubt she’s as happy deep inside as she appears.

  17. mslewis says:

    I disagree that she is “confident” and “self-assured.” I think she is ACTING confident and self-assured. I have seen her on many talk shows, both before and after “Precious” became such a big deal. People were asking her about her life and how her life compared to the life of the character. She talked about her weight and at first she seem to be unhappy with it and, all of a sudden, she started saying how she has “come to grips” with her weight and how she had tried to diet and just decided to just “love” herself as she was. Looking at her face, I did not believe her.

    I think this young woman is not as carefree as people think she is and is putting on a great show. Let’s see what happens in the coming weeks/months/years when she tries to continue her acting. I’m betting she will go on a diet (healthy one, I hope) and start to lose a few pounds. Then we can see how she really feels about being obese.

    Having said that, I’m sick of reading, hearing, talking about Gaby and her fat. I was out to dinner last night with my cousins and Gaby was one of the topics. We all agreed she had zero chance of a movie career but also agreed that people should stop giving her advice. So, that’s my opinion . . . stop with the advice and criticism and let Gaby figure this out for herself.

  18. andrea says:

    she is not sorta overweight, she appears to be morbidly obese. i hardly think the main motivation for losing weight should be an oscar or anything related to hollywood, but for her health, comfort and long life. she seems like she might be a candidate for some sort of surgery – one of the few who might actually have a legitimate medically sound need for it. if she does choose to lose some weight, i hope she does it in accordance with her doctors ideas of how it should be done, and not hollywood’s.

  19. Maritza says:

    It would be cool to see her participate in Celebrity Fitness Club just to see her slowly losing weight. She is a young lady who might want to get married some day and have kids, being this obese is not healthy.

  20. mollination says:

    Why is there a NAAFA again? What have they accomplished here or anywhere else?

    In my opinion, trying to end discrimination with specialized groups that target a specific audience is counterproductive. How bout just a GLOBAL ASSOCIATION FOR ACCEPTANCE?
    All of us! Fat, black, gay, thin, old, ugly, talented, addicted, athletes, hispanic, blond, Indian, diseased, shy, bald, sick, psychologically unstable, ice-landic, drunk, honors students, scientists, decrepit, four-legged, hermaphrodites, L, G, B, AND T, Heterosexual, metrosexual, trysexual, asexual, virgins, sluts, Chinese, Japanese, Russian, “other”, poor, blue-collar, white-collar, and human.

    Any other ways anyone can think of to distinguish the same species, throw it in there. Hell, throw in plants and animals too.

  21. Kirsten says:

    People should just leave this poor girl alone! If you watch her in interviews she is totally comfortable with herself, and really funny! At the oscars she told Gerard Butler that she would “hit that” Love her!

  22. Ugh. says:

    No one is upset that she is a confident woman who is comfortable in her own skin. No where is it mentioned that she should be ashamed for looking the way she does.

    People are simply mentioning that this woman, talent aside, is grossly overweight. And no matter how you hash it, being grossly overweight AND grossly underweight -is- in fact unhealty.

    She may be talented, she may be confident, but she is obese and obesity is not okay.

  23. CB Rawks says:

    “I’m starting to think that people are mad at her for not being all insecure, weak and negative about her weight”

    Yes, that’s what I think they are doing also.
    I have experience with that too. A mother and sister that were extremely resentful that they couldn’t tear us down and create insecurities in us.
    It essentially points to the fact that those people themselves are insecure and negative, so they want Gaby to feel miserable about herself and then they can somehow feel good about that. Twisted.

  24. Call me Al says:

    There are millions of people in this country who are overweight, obese, and morbidly obese. Yes, it is unhealthy. However, it is reality and these people have real lives. Movies should tell the stories of all people, not just skinny/fit people. So they will need some obese people to play those roles. Just because someone is obese does not mean that they cannot be happy or have a successful career. Although obesity is unhealthy, it is part of our world. Smoking is unhealthy, and many Hollywood actresses/actors/models smoke. Should we not portray people smoking in movies because it is unhealthy? Too late.

  25. Lenore says:

    Whether or not obesity is unhealthy, it’s her life and her body and none of anyone else’s damn business. She’s got one life to live and if she’s happy with how it’s going, why would ANYONE want to spoil it for her?

    Who are all these sad lonely bastards who want to point their fingers at the fat girl and tell her, “You’re heading for a heart attack. It’s not healthy. I’m only saying this because I care. Also, because I don’t want to pay your medical bills with my taxes. Also, because I don’t find you personally attractive. Also, because your self-confidence undermines my sense of superiority. PUT THE FORK DOWN, YOU HAPPY BITCH!”

    Honestly, just leave the woman alone. So she’s overweight and probably not in the best of health. Lots of people are in poor health and put themselves at risk. They drink, they take drugs, they eat fatty foods, they don’t eat at all, they drink too much coffee, they run red lights, they do risky sports, they don’t exercise, WHAT EVER. So long as she can still move around, wash, take care of herself, let her live her life and be happy. What else really matters?

  26. Cheyenne says:

    @Mollination: NAAFA exists because evidently fat-bashing is the last socially acceptable prejudice. A lot of people who would be horrified at hearing a person of color called by a racial or ethnic slur, or a gay person called a faggot, have no problem bashing fat people right out in public to their faces. The following was printed on the New York Times Op-Ed page yesterday.
    (For Obese People, Prejudice in Plain Sight)

  27. mutterhals says:

    She is grossly, morbidly obese, which is just as unhealthy as being underweight. Both will kill you eventually, so I don’t see how she is any different than some anorexic model.

    If she was just some girl on the street, I would mind my own business, but she’s an actress, for Christ’s sake, she’s public property. ‘Mind your own business’ merely means ‘I disagree with you and I’m not smart enough to come up with a good argument.’

  28. Elong says:

    URGH! Your health care costs and insurance permiums aren’t going up simply because of the obese. Take a good long look at society. We’re a bunch of pill poppers. The drug industry is making money hand over fist all the while diverting attention to hospitals and insurance companies as the blame. I don’t think Gaby is as healthy as she could be, but I’m also not certain she’s on as many prescription pills as the avearge American. She’s big, she would live longer if she dropped some wieght, but she’s not the reason your health care costs are sky rocketing. You have no right KrispyKreme to tell anyone how to live their own lives. Please tell me with a straight face you’ve never had an alcoholic beverage, never smoked a cigarette or cigar, never eat anything with sat fat. You should not judge based on your assupmtions. You may be able to hide your vices (which make my premiums skyrocket) and therefore feel you shouldn’t be held accountable. Just because you see someone is too large does NOT give you the right to approach that person and spew your garbage.
    /end rant

  29. Green Is Good says:

    @mollination: Well said!

  30. Corrie says:

    When I see her being interviewed she comes across with such a sparkling personality that she’s enchanting. I think her face is beautiful and she’s utterly charming. despite what some people seem to think it is possible to love yourself no matter what your physical shape. Besides none of us owes it to the rest of the world to attempt to be as asthetically pleasing to everyone.

    Her health is her own business. Her supposed burden on the heathcare system (and you tax money? WTF? We don’t have nationalized heathcare so that’s bullshit). We all have behaviors that potentially affect others — not just the obvious drinking, smoking, drugs, etc., but also things like jay walking, not getting mammograms or flu shots, abusing our bodies not getting enough sleep. The argument that her health affects you is a bullshit cover up for hating fat people.

  31. Tazina says:

    She is well aware of the health consequences. It’s HER deal. That’s what she’s thinking right now. People need to butt out and mind their own business.

  32. SolitaryAngel says:

    @ mollination: AMEN, sister!

  33. CB Rawks says:

    Damn well said, Lenore and Corrie!

  34. orion70 says:

    I think they had a right to speak up. Perhaps there’s young women out there who look like Gaby or are overweight at all, listening to all the comments about Gaby’s weight, feeling horrible about themselves. I know many people would say “well then, they should use that energy to diet!” . This is mostly about acceptance the way I see it.

    People making the negative comments are championing for what exactly?

  35. Dingles says:

    “I’m only saying this because I care. Also, because I don’t want to pay your medical bills with my taxes. Also, because I don’t find you personally attractive. Also, because your self-confidence undermines my sense of superiority.”

    Lenore = win.

  36. GrrrrrrlGrace says:

    @mutterhals: “Mind your own business” means when you yourself do NOTHING wrong in your life and are yourself PERFECT, then you can boss someone else around about their vices.

    Have you never said this phrase to someone?

  37. GatsbyGal says:

    I think a lot of people work very hard to not be fat- they diet like crazy, work out like mad, and at the end of the day they look in the mirror and feel successful. Because to them, being thin equals being a success, and fat equals failure. So when Gaby comes along and becomes successful anyway even though she is overweight, all those people who work so hard to be thin get angry and feel threatened.

  38. Aussie Mama says:

    Morbid obesity leads to an early grave. This has nothing to do with hate, it is common sense. Moderation, with food, grog, sun, everything. It doesn’t pay to be a pig with anything.
    Jesus, you have weight watchers saying; Eat at McDonalds people, you’ll lose weight eating nuggets. Some morons out there, will see this as a green light and the perfect excuse and only get bigger and unhealthier. Common!

  39. viper says:

    She’s an obese unhealthy person. PERIOD. So it the majority of saudi arabians and americans. Its a fact, now if she can or wants to lose weight HER CHOICE. If sh edoesnt also her choice. Get the fuck off her back and focus on your own asses.

  40. ! says:

    What do you suggest, Kaiser? That the other side remain silent and let the slander continue, going completely unchallenged…?

  41. ViktoryGin says:



    creating a systematic interest group is problematic because, other than their need for acceptance and equality, the experiences of these groups are varied and therefore can’t always be addressed the same. For example, many people use biblical references to justify the discrimination of gays, but there’s no such “validation” for the obese. Either way, it’s not right. It would be nice, though if human rights issues weren’t so complex.

  42. judyjudy says:

    I don’t know much about this woman, she seems very charming, and I really don’t care how much she weighs.

    What I do find ironic, however, is that when people saw the character she played in Precious they felt shocked and saddened by the size of this poor girl. But in real life, everyone is saying “so what? let her be”. Yes, I realize that there were so many elements of the character that were shocking other than her size, but when I saw the first still shot of the girl who played Precious I gasped and felt really, really bad for her. So what’s the difference? Is it the zip code? Is it the smile?

    I don’t get it.

  43. RhymesWithSilver says:

    I seem to be one of the few who thinks she actually has a career ahead of her. Hollywood does occasionally make movies about real people, and there are more than a few people who look like Gaby. She’s also a damn good actress and, I think, could be pretty versatile. There are a lot of roles, especially supporting roles, that would be way the hell better with Gaby Sidibe in them than, say, Jessica Alba.

  44. Lenore says:


    “What I do find ironic, however, is that when people saw the character she played in Precious they felt shocked and saddened by the size of this poor girl. But in real life, everyone is saying “so what? let her be”. Yes, I realize that there were so many elements of the character that were shocking other than her size, but when I saw the first still shot of the girl who played Precious I gasped and felt really, really bad for her. So what’s the difference? Is it the zip code? Is it the smile?”

    I think you hit it with the last sentence there, Judyjudy. Yeah, it’s the smile.

    It’s the difference between a miserable, downtrodden, helpless, almost hopeless character whose weight is apparently a symptom of her dreadful situation and misery, against the sparkling, delightful, self-confident, happy young actress who played her.

    Maybe I’m weird, maybe I just know a lot of happy fat girls, but I didn’t automatically pity Precious on sight because of her size. I guess what it boils down to is whether one automatically assumes that all fat girls MUST be unhappy with their size; I don’t.

    Most of the big girls I know will occasionally say they need to lose a little weight, and then tuck into a bacon butty and a Snickers for lunch. Because they enjoy it. Because it makes them happy. NOT because they’re so depressed that only comfort eating junk-food and crying into their bucket of chicken can relieve their private torment about their size. They’re not tormented, unless some other jackass torments them.

    Yeah, they know they’re overweight; yeah, they know their health will suffer for it in the long run. But they’re happy, they’re perfectly capable of taking care of themselves and providing for their families; we’re not talking about those people who have to be washed with a rag on a stick and rolled out of bed just so their buttocks don’t rot. Until a person is THAT fat, so long as they’re happy, live and let live.

  45. piedlourde says:

    Did you guys see her on The Soup? Hilarious stuff, I love this girl!

    Oh, and she totally got it on with Gerry. True story!

  46. LuLu says:


    Yes, she was amazing on The Soup. I love her even more now!