Woman who criticized Nike's plus-size mannequin saying obese people 'cannot run' accused of fat shaming
Tanya Gold wrote a feature on Sunday highlighting how the plus-size mannequin could encourage people to be fat
A critic of Nike's new, controversial plus-size mannequin is facing a backlash over her statements about obese people.
Nike had recently unveiled a plus-size mannequin at its store on Oxford Street in London.
In response to the new mannequin, journalist Tanya Gold wrote a feature in The Telegraph on Sunday highlighting how the plus-size mannequin could encourage people to be fat. Gold has since received a lot of criticism and many have slammed her for alleging that plus-size women "cannot run" and are intrinsically unhealthy.
"I fear that the war on obesity is lost, or has even, as is fashionable, ceased to exist, for fear of upsetting people into an early grave. [T]he new Nike mannequin is not size 12, which is healthy, or even 16—a hefty weight, yes, but not one to kill a woman. She is immense, gargantuan, vast. She heaves with fat," Gold wrote.
"The new mannequin is obese, and she is not readying herself for a run in her shiny Nike gear. She cannot run. She is, more likely, pre-diabetic and on her way to a hip replacement. What terrible cynicism is this on the part of #Nike?" she continued.
Gold also argued that traditional images of female beauty are unrealistically skewed and that, in a way, the mannequin is encouraging people to accept being fat.
Gold believes that this is dangerous and shared, "The facts are obvious. Stay that weight and you will be an old woman in your 50s. The obese Nike athlete is just another lie," she added.
Many readers claimed that Gold's argument was illogical as she was asking people to lose weight while criticizing a sportswear brand for targetting them with its advertising.
"Like the idiocy found in this article baffles me. There’s a difference between stating an opinion and stating that it’s unhealthy. But she degrades the plus size individuals," wrote one user.
Several others also criticized her theory that plus-size mannequins promoted an unhealthy lifestyle.
"I’m a size 22, totally healthy, completed a half marathon at an average speed of 6km/hour. No diabetes, no hip replacement. F***k you very much Mrs journalist..." wrote another.
A third user added, "I'm all for this because it's not glorifying being overweight, like a lot of people think it is, it's showing off product available for those who do want to lose weight. You have to start somewhere."
That said, Maxine Ali, who is a health and wellness writer, said in a 2017 study published in the Journal of Eating Disorders that more than 90% of female mannequins represent medically unhealthy and underweight bodies.