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Should Government Block “Fat Shaming”?

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Sadiq Khan speaks during The Great Debate on BBC One, on the EU Referendum in London, Britain June 21, 2016. REUTERS/Stefan Rousseau/Pool

Complaints about EU bureaucrats interfering with every aspect of British life helped spark the recent Brexit vote in the UK. But English officials are even more intrusive – and more ridiculous – at home.

The new mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, kept a campaign promise by banning ads on public transit that he called “fat shaming.” The first censored image featured a healthy, athletic young woman in a bikini as part of a dietary supplement ad that asked, “Are you beach body ready?” The new rules now bar any imagery that bureaucrats consider “likely to create body confidence issues, particularly among young people.”

Since professional models generally have better bodies than the rest of us, wouldn’t any images of notably attractive people cause “body confidence issues” in somebody? This is an outrageous, nanny-state invasion of free expression, when the appropriate response to ads you dislike is to avoid buying the product – thereby forcing better ads.

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  1. David  •  Jul 22, 2016 at 3:45 pm

    The article misses that Sadiq Khan is merely bringing Muslim mores to UK, including demanding modest dress and depictions of women, and including ads put on London's double-decker buses that give Islamic messages in Arabic. This is exactly what many people are complaining about when they cite the gradual Islamization of Europe and North America too.

    • Annie  •  Jul 22, 2016 at 5:00 pm

      You are right David. This is a thinly veiled "camel nose in the tent" (if you'll pardon the obvious intentional reference) towards a more "modest" dress rule for billboards and eventually women, in London. It is dishonest to the core, and a way the Muslim Mayor thinks he can appeal to feminists to join the cause. Disgusting.

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