Taking a Break

Here’s why my blog posting has been sporadic lately

Thought I’d hop on here after taking yesterday off. If you follow me regularly, you’ve noticed that my #HistoryMonday & #CurrentEventFriday posts are more sporadic lately. I wanted to try and explain that phenomenon and share some reflections I’ve had lately.

No doubt, your social media feeds are filled with new information about Covid-19 and protests about race in addition to the usual distractions. My feed is no different, and as I skim through the feeds my brain is overwhelmed by opinions from all sides and I’m about to have a breakdown. What’s particularly frustrating is that I’m getting upset at posts from friends and other personalities on both sides of the political spectrum. I believe that Black lives have not always mattered and that we have work to do on race relations, but some of the ideas are ridiculous. I also believe that law enforcement is a challenging profession, but reform needs to happen to add accountability for malfeasance and/or bias with certain individuals. As far as the Coronavirus, I’m getting frustrated that the WHO, CDC, and other medical experts are seemingly taking a stab in the dark every other week on how the virus behaves—masks are necessary for healthcare workers, everybody should wear them, only symptomatic folks should wear them. Besides that, lockdowns didn’t happen soon enough, they were necessary, they were harmful, or protests might be safe as the virus is sleeping. Particularly galling is that funerals with hundreds of people for slain black folk are okay but not for your grandmother because…reasons.

While I might normally agree or ‘like’ posts from friends, family, or other posters on posts that may have political undertones, I’m trying to maintain more radio silence and avoid reacting or commenting publicly. I may add a quip on Twitter since it doesn’t affect my vocation as negatively as if I posted on Facebook. This isn’t to say that I don’t have internal comments and reactions, I just don’t share them publicly. Plus, there’s enough arguing and commenting from everybody else that my voice would get lost.

Many times, I’ll fast Facebook during Lent, and that’s healthy for the 40 days I’m off the site. I probably should fast other social media during that time too. With the hatefulness and insanity on social media, I’m about ready for 2nd Lent so I could get off social media for a while. Even public pages for businesses and organizations have quite a few hateful and terrible comments. As I read comments on a post from NASCAR recently, the racist and mean comments about how a young boy sang the National Anthem were shocking and infuriating.  Unfortunately, since I’m not fasting social media and I see all the crap on it, my brain isn’t in the mood to process writing about history, social issues, and current events. Besides, there’s enough history (or is it histrionics?) and current events going on in your feed, that you can get your fix from others besides myself.

Luckily, my creative side is not as affected by the social media outrage and I can still do my Poetry Wednesday posts. I may also try to put together some travel guides for the next few weeks since that’s generally a positive post and if you’re like me, going on vacation sounds great right about now. Hopefully, social media and the outrage culture that’s dominating the news cycle right now will calm down or my brain gets a reset from vacation that my usual posting for Mondays and Fridays will be back soon. Stay tuned!

Is your brain struggling to function lately?

Current Event Friday #90

Cancel culture has a humongous issue with a celebrity weight loss trainer

One of the stars of The Biggest Loser didn’t have to take the DNA test, but according to backlash from music fans and online critics, Jillian Michaels is 100% a word that rhymes with witch. So, there’s a new target for cancel culture and the outrage mob in today’s #CurrentEventFriday.

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Jillian Michaels, former trainer on The Biggest Loser

Last week, Jillian Michaels appeared on a talk show hosted by BuzzFeed to talk about her ongoing projects and offer some sort of expertise about fitness and healthy living. While talking about pop culture somehow the topic turned to Lizzo and Ashley Graham. Born Melissa Jefferson, an R&B star using the stage name Lizzo has become known for her body positivity as well as Graham, a plus-size model was featured on the cover of Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue in 2016. The host mentioned the body positivity angle espoused by Lizzo and Graham, when Jillian Michaels commented that while a healthy attitude about body image is good and she enjoys Lizzo’s music for her artistic ability and that the body shape was irrelevant. The host pushed back on Michaels, who said why was the body image so important and that celebrating Lizzo’s weight was misguided as Lizzo is dangerously obese. Michaels joked that dying early of diabetes shouldn’t mean that Lizzo’s body image positivity was more important.

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Lizzo, performing at a recent awards show

Naturally, everyone connected to pop culture moved to cancel Jillian Michaels for her harmful and hateful comments towards Lizzo. Complaints that Michaels was fat-shaming Lizzo were leveled by many on social media who pointed out that it’s the 21st Century and we have moved beyond such bullying.

Thankfully, Lizzo hasn’t responded on her social media to Michaels’s comments about her weight. Michaels posted a throwback photo of herself on Instagram from her teenage years with a caption stating, “Here’s me at 5’0 tall and 175 lbs. If I can do it – anyone can.” Michaels’s post was her attempt to show that weight loss can be safe and healthy.

You can probably guess that I agree with Jillian Michaels on this. We now live in a culture where saying a person who is 300+ pounds is celebrated for being happy at that weight. The only person we should expect to be happy being that rotund is Santa Claus. Shows like My 600-lb Life or Hot & Heavy are produced by TLC to show the dangers of unhealthy weight and are guilty pleasures for people who are entertained by the odd and unusual. Even The Biggest Loser, Celebrity Fit Club, and other shows that promote healthy weight loss are popular as Americans realize that the Land of Plenty is sometimes a blessing and a curse and being healthy promotes longer lives. Honestly, I know that my eating habits could be better and the best way to change my habits is to eat meals while watching television shows featuring people at unhealthy weights in order that I might put down that next morsel.

Cancel culture and the outrage mob exemplify where we are that telling objective truth is to be shamed and what was shameful before is now celebrated whether it’s obesity, infidelity, abortions, gender dysphoria, or many other issues that are now so politically charged.

Was Jillian Michaels correct that Lizzo’s weight is unhealthy and the music should be the particular focus?