I really need your help. I am in my out reach phase – I need attention to this walk, I must raise some money and more than anything else, I want to talk with the American people about obesity, and what better place to start this conversation than close to home.
So, I am reaching out to religious organizations in my community to create opportunities to hold a conversation about obesity.
Some of you express reluctance to have that conversation with your congregations, and frankly it makes me sad and confused.
It makes me sad that you are reluctant to have this conversation because obesity kills – it kills an awful lot of people. Last year obesity killed 300,000 people. This is 10 times as many as died from breast cancer. This is a lot of death. Even more people suffers because of obesity. They suffer due to discrimination, prejudice, their health is impacted and frankly when we get big enough then all that weight is painful to carry.When you refuse to have a conversation about obesity then you turn your back on that suffering, and that makes me sad. It also confuses me because in my world this is not what compassion would do, and my spirituality is inextricably linked with compassion and caring.
Let’s also not fall prey to the misconceptions that obese people are just too lazy, stupid, undisciplined or otherwise incapable to deserve help, support and compassion. Obesity is a complex medical issue and it needs to be approached with respect, but we must approach it. As much as we must approach breast cancer, we must approach obesity – maybe even 10 times as much.
Right now we are not doing well in fighting obesity as it is getting worse. It is getting worse because we avoid the conversations, and because we do not invest in the obesity fight. If we do not talk about it then we give power to obesity and more people will die. It makes me sad that I hear from some of you that this conversation is not “spiritual” enough. Is it spiritual to turn your back on people’s suffering and ultimately death?
I am flexible, and I can certainly understand if you do not want me at your pulpit Sunday morning. It really does not matter where or how the opportunity shows itself to talk with people about obesity. I will take any option.
So let’s put aside the “That’s not spiritual enough” misunderstanding. Let’s start to help each other and our selves – In my world, God approves when we help each other. Let’s also put aside the fear. At my size I can assure you my conversation will be non-threatening, non-preachy and very respectful.
With that said – I need your help. This is a worthy cause and one I am passionate about. I really need your help getting the word out there.