Despite our ongoing educational campaign about the fact that bullshit "toning shoes" are bullshit, the segment grew by more than 800% in 2009. BIG SIGH. The ironic part? Obese people barely have any bullshit products to call their own!
Ad Age has a fascinating report on corporate America's shameful racism against the obese, who are on their way to becoming a majority of we, the people. ACTUAL FACT: "In 1996 there wasn't a single state in the U.S. where the adult obesity rate was greater than 20%. A mere 14 years later, 49 states have crossed that line."
Despite the fact that so many of us are hefty, companies have been slow to "roll out," and we mean that in a strictly business sense, products catering to the Large demographic (besides more food). Where are the extra-wide restaurant seats, the EZ-Glide Personal Transportation Vehicles in twelve new styles, the plus-size clothes that do not resemble garbage bags and/ or are, in fact, remodeled garbage bags? They are, for the most part, nowhere to be found. One problem: marketers say that even if they do make such products, they can't fuckin' advertise them, man:
[A professor's] research looked at the impact of models of varying weights on the self-esteem of overweight women. "There isn't any size model that improves the self-esteem for overweight consumers," she said. They reacted most positively to ads with no models in them.
Let's all make a deal: fat people, you agree to grin and outwardly accept the awful, fumbling advertising efforts that corporate America will patronize you with. And companies making toning shoes, cookie diets, juice cleanses, and other bullshit, you agree to market your crapola to the obese. We can all get scammed together. It's the American Way.