It's time for a war on thinness!
On the eve of London Fashion Week the growing trend for "size-zero" models in the fashion industry is causing grave concern.
Experts say legislation is now needed to protect the health of the models and of the teenage girls and young women who are influenced by them.
They are urging London to follow the lead taken by Madrid — and likely to be adopted by Milan — of banning models below a certain size from the catwalks.
Under any ban, super-thin models such as Lily Cole would be barred. London Fashion Week, which begins next week, has so far refused to follow suit.
Steve Bloomfield, spokesman for the Eating Disorders Association, said today: "We do think legislation is needed.
"This is about protecting the young women and men who work in the fashion industry, as well as those who are at risk of an eating disorder and can be influenced by the pictures that they see.
Given that skinny women are hopelessly manipulated by the fashion industry, and that obese women are hopelessly manipulated by the food industry, I propose the following magic-bullet legislation:
The government should buy every obese person subscriptions to the top fashion magazines; meanwhile every skinny person should be forced to sit through a dozen McDonalds, sugary cereal, and Hostess cupcake commercials.
In six months, we'll all wear the same size, and everyone will finally be equal.
It's worth noting that despite all of this talk about childhood obesity, the average adolescent today is between 200 and 1,000 times more likely to have an eating disorder than Type II Diabetes (eating disorder ranges from the National Institute of Mental Health and diabetes statistics from the CDC). The state of Arkansas recently won wide praise from the public health community for a new policy of weighing all the state's public shool kids, then sending a kind of obesity "report card" home to parents. Given the above numbers, there's probably a pretty good chance that policy's doing more harm than good, no?
Indeed, Britain and Australia have both seen a recent uptick in eating disorders in young girls as a result of both countries' hysterical anti-obesity hype:
Girls as young as five are unhappy with their bodies and want to be thinner, according to a study which blames peer pressure in a child's early years at school. Most girls thought that being slim would make them more popular, claimed the research in the British Journal of Developmental Psychology. They would also have no hesitation in dieting if they gained weight. The study was conducted among five- to eight-year-olds in South Australia, but experts said last night that British children felt "paranoid" about their weight - partly because of the Government's anti-obesity message.
Dr Andrew Hill, of Leeds University Medical School, said research among more than 200 eight-year-olds showed a high awareness of the campaign against obesity. "Children have absorbed anti-fat messages loud and clear", he said. "To get people to listen about a condition, you talk it up, and we have got obesity on the health agenda.
Just another example of the unintended consequences resulting from paternalistic government.