I just finished watching a documentary called Fat and Fatter, and I was alternately fascinated and disgusted - as are most of the people who watch these shows about incredibly ridiculously morbidly obese people (since such a distinction now seems necessary as there are so many who are "morbidly obese" now). It's probably why so many of these shows are now on the air and seem to be gaining popularity. Maybe watching the SUPER CRAZY fat people make the rest of us mildly chubby Americans feel good about ourselves by comparison.
The premise of the show revolves around two young fat women from England who can't find the motivation to lose weight. Both these girls are obese and weigh 280-375 pounds, but they seem like skinny health nuts next to the morbidly obese Mississippians they get to know throughout the show.
They go to live with this obese family in Mississippi for a week or so, and these self-proclaimed food addicted fat English women are repeatedly traumatized and horrified by the 500+ pound women who cannot dress themselves, cannot feel their feet, cannot walk 20 yards, cannot physically tolerate the taste of any vegetable, and who douse all their food with mounds of salt and butter and syrup/honey/sugar despite spending 12+ hours a week on dialysis so the machine can clean their blood so that they can stay alive for another week to go on keeping the junk food manufacturers in business. They even take a field trip to a graveyard and cry about all their obese relatives and how young they all died.
None of the "fatter" Mississipians seem to care about their behavior or want to change it. They admit feeling bad or guilty now and then - like when another obese relative dies - but one women states honestly that she just doesn't think about her Aunt when it's time to eat. When asked what her diabetes doctor would say about her diet, another "fatter" woman looks up from her stew of biscuits, butter and syrup long enough to give the devil eye to the girl who questioned her as she takes another dripping bite.
These "fatter" women are merry through much of the show, laughing and crowing and welcoming their foreign guests. They treat them to their favorite all you can eat buffet (only $6 for over 250 food options), to their weekly family cook out feast, to a "traditional" Southern meal consisting of things like pigs feet and ears. They almost seem likable at times, but they never come across as sympathetic characters. All they do is eat and sleep and struggle to treat their resulting ailments.
These women are KILLING themselves. They support themselves with Social Security disability - paid for by our tax dollars. Their endless medications and diabetes treatments are offered up courtesy of Medicaid I'm sure. They sit around and gorge themselves on cheap disgusting nutrient-less junk food - which are manufactured by companies who are directly subsidized by our government. And they don't even give a damn! They are laughing and eating and lying around in their own filth - literally - because they don't even fit into showers. It's like watching people on unemployment go on lavish shopping sprees instead of look for a job. I'm sorry I can't hug or encourage or attempt to help people like that, as the girls in the show attempt to do.
I just don't even know what to say. I guess this is just one more fat ring on the vicious spiral of poverty, obesity, ignorance and government dependence that is killing our country one citizen at a time, one family at a time, one community at a time. And as it spreads it becomes normal, and policy makers and educators seem powerless to stop it. Whatever "it" is - it is literally killing us.