by Andy Nowicki
"To find out who rules over you, just discern who you are not allowed to criticize." This quote, apparently misattributed to French philosophe Voltaire, retains the profound flavor of truth no matter who first uttered it.
Of course, there are proximate authorities, and then there are ultimate authorities. I doubt that the morbidly obese are our true rulers; nevertheless, as comedienne Nicole Arbour has discovered with the recent yanking of her video "Dear Fat People" from Youtube, one clearly isn't allowed to criticize the plus-sized.
Comedian and YouTube star Nicole Arbour, whose videos regularly get millions of views, is offensive — and she embraces that.But after her viral video "Dear Fat People" received outcry from commenters and leaders in the body acceptance community, her YouTube and Google+ channels were temporarily disabled Sunday. "We literally broke the Internet… With comedy. #censorship" Arbour tweeted after her account was taken down. (It has since been reinstated.) The video remained posted at Facebook, where it has more than 18 million views and 175,000 likes.Arbour, however, embraces the role as a controversial comedian."She's like the Donald Trump of YouTube," one commenter wrote on her Sept. 5 post titled "Most Offensive Video EVER," which was uploaded a day after "Dear Fat People."
The video calls out race, childhood obesity, "stupid people," violence and more controversial issues.
The video is still up at Facebook (see it here). In it, Arbour specifically states that she's not targeting people with underlying medical conditions, but only those who make inappropriate excuses for bad lifestyle choices. Still, her critics are, er, blubbering about how mean she is for implying that the overweight ought to feel motivated to get healthy, instead of being flattered, indulged, and fawned over. Here is a-- heh!-- hefty sample of Youtube responses from the anti- "Dear Fat People" contingent (trigger warning: whininess, poutiness, unseemly attention whoring, repugnant concern-trolling ahead!):
Yikes! And there are zillions more Youtube vids just like these and probably worse... (Y'all can find out. I don't have the—heh—stomach—to watch any more.)
One fears that yet another requisite ritual apology/self-abasement may be forthcoming... Then again, maybe Ms. Arbour take a page from the Trump playbook and commit the truly revolutionary act of refusing to grovel before the perpetually sanctimonious and the habitually aggrieved.
One thing for sure: contemporary media show-trials make great entertainment. So go grab a Big Mac, a Peanut Buster Parfait, and a big box of buttered popcorn... and stay tuned.