Cute or Horrifying?

fatfu-48.jpg posted by fatfu

A music teacher leads her elementary school kids in singing the charming children’s Christmas song “Santa Claus, Santa Claus You Are Much too Fat.”

The audio isn’t the greatest, so here are the lyrics:

I heard a reindeer hoof, then Santa dressed in red,
came crashing thro’ the roof and landed on my bed.
I thought it was a dream, but quickly did I wake,
as soon as I heard Santa scream, “I want a piece of cake!”

CHORUS
Oh, Santa Claus, Santa Claus, you are much too fat;
I was sleeping peacefully but not my bed is flat. Oh!
Santa Claus, Santa Claus, how much do you weigh?
I’m glad I’m not a reindeer that has to pull your sleigh!

He got up off the floor and said, “How do you do?”
I said, “My back is sore, my head is black and blue.”
“So sorry!” he replied, and then he asked my name.
He offered me a ride, I said, “No, thank you just the same!”

CHORUS

I heard a “ho, ho, ho,” the sleigh was in the sky.
but it was moving slow and wasn’t very high.
It wobbled in the air, I hoped it wouldn’t fall;
Said Santa, chewing cookies, “Merry Christmas, one and all!”

CHORUS

I’d never heard of this song, maybe everyone else knows it, but it was news to me. (On the other hand, I live in a bubble under a rock in a cave, so there’s not much that isn’t news to me.)

But apparently, this isn’t the only music teacher this year to figure it’s a perfect Christmas song for elementary school kids. One parent (from another school) recently blogged about having to have her kids exempted from singing the song because she objected to the values it was teaching. (Score one for family values).

But it’s a stumper isn’t it? I mean don’t you have to be terminally priggish to be offended by it and not see it as silly meaningless fluff for kids? It’s all in fun, and it’s about Santa, for God’s sake. On the humorlessness scale, there not enough distance to see daylight between the obesity crusaders launching a war on Santa’s waistline and my taking offense at a fat Santa song.

I’ll have to live with that comparison, I guess. Because if you’re tempted to see children teasing about weight, or a music teacher implicitly encouraging it as adorable and funny, the web site I Was a Fat Kid…This is my Story should be a cold splash of water on the face. (continued…..)

In it, people have posted their experiences as fat children. Some are adults looking back, many are children still going through it. What becomes clear is that it’s a polite euphemism to call what many fat children endure in school just “teasing.” Or even “bullying.” In fact, virtually none of the writers on I Was a Fat Kid use the word “bullying.” “Torture” “torment” “harassment” “abuse” are terms they use:

…Constant harassment, including sexual harassment, threats, and physical abuse filled many days before, during and after school…

…they would pinch and poke at my belly and arms while calling me fatty and laughing up a storm..I was punched and kicked and mocked…

…They use to throw their leftover food at me and tell me to eat it fat boy otherwise they would beat me up after school…

…I was subject to assholes in the street screaming abuse at me, usually things like “fat bitch”, “fat cunt” etc. …

.. a group of three boys started to harass me, calling me name after name….fatty two by four, Amazon, Earthquake girl, Piggy, Fatso etc. They shoved me and pushed me but I managed to get away! I remember feeling as a kid….I cant take this anymore…

…The harassment continued throughout middle school where I would spend each lunch period in the bathroom stall bawling my eyes out because the kids in my grade would moo at me when I walked into a classroom…

…Some kids that had always tortured me for being fat were waiting for me there and stuck burrs in my shoulder length hair. They also punched me, kicked me and knocked me down and ran off laughing, calling me names as they left..I also had my face shoved into snow banks and had my glasses broken…

..on the bus they used to push me around and call me a fat cow, fat bitch, etc….

…My daughters childhood memories that are suppose to be so wonderful are nothing but a living nightmare…

Most of the perpetrators of course are just children, but one of the pervasive themes in these stories is how so many of these kids felt that the adults around them (particularly teachers) were either willfully ignorant of or complicit in the abuse, with some either subtly or overtly encouraging it.

Or that’s how the children saw it anyway. It’s impossible to know, really, from a child’s eye view what was going on in the minds of the adults around them. Was the teacher who weighed all the students in front of each other ignorant of the effect this would have on the fat children? Or just didn’t think it was very important? Or just didn’t think.

I guess I have the same question about teachers who would teach children this song. It’s only funny if you don’t think.

And these days one grisly possibility is that a teacher who turns to this song may feel it’s a minor blow on behalf of fighting childhood obesity. It’s true that some of the writers in I Was a Fat Kid describe trying to lose weight because of the torture they endured (often by developing eating disorders) – but many gained. None felt better off for it.

No surprise, because what’s also clear from reading these stories is that for many of these kids, the victimization they endure in school leads to profound trauma and scarring. Suicide attempts, eating disorders, rage and depression come up a lot.  A number bring up the lifelong psychological blowback: 

…I have blocked out most of my childhood. What does come back now and then usually makes me cry…

…Those years of being tormented about my weight and appearance still are in my mind…This kind of social and verbal abuse can ruin one’s entire self -image and hopes of healthy relationships…

…I still feel the pain of being tormented as a child and I know that my whole life I will still feel like a “fat slob” because that’s what I was labeled as a kid…I am happier now, but I know that my obsession with how I look and my unhealthy attitude about my weight are not going to leave any time soon. I’m now in therapy and working to kick the bulimia…

…If either of my girls do develop a weight problem, I will pull them out of school and home-school them. I want them to grow up feeling good about themselves and valued as special people, because I wasn’t…

…I will say the affect of this abuse on my self esteem had long ranging effects…

…I am now 46 years old and relatively thin 5’8″ 144 lbs. but to this day if anyone looks at me I think they are laughing at me because I’m fat. The scars never go away!… 

…I am a successful educator with a Master’s Degree and certifications in several areas, but I am still that insecure “fat child” most of the time…

It’s overkill to blame teachers for all this – bullying is pervasive and difficult to stop. But I can’t imagine making the smallest most trivial move to encourage it. No matter how cute.  

So my verdict: Cute in a vacuum. Horrifying in context.

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85 Responses to “Cute or Horrifying?”

  1. Sniper Says:

    Hmmm. I’m a middle school teacher and I vote flat-out horrifying. My school just showed Shrek II at lunch becuase it was an “inside day” and a group of my kids started harassing a chubby kid by calling her “Fiona”. (Of course, I pulled them aside and had a little chat.) This song actually encourages harassment.

    • Anna Says:

      Damn, really? I love Fiona! She’s amazing! Yes, she’s chubby, and then she’s a kick arse martial artist, beautiful kind and doens’t take crap from anybody. I just wish she had been around when I was a kid.

  2. cynth Says:

    I vote double horrifying. I am missing the cute here. The silly songs we learn as children never leave our heads. I would hate to have my grand kids learn such a hideous song.

  3. Lindsay Says:

    It’s cute if you actually hate children and like seeing them rip each other apart.

    Otherwise it’s perfectly fucking hideous.

  4. femmeknitzi Says:

    I remember how terrified I would be if we had to watch nature videos in school. If it involved hippos, elephants or rhinos someone would inevitably turn to me and go, “hey look! it’s Liz!” To this day, I can’t really stand to watch nature videos. I cannot imagine being a fat kid forced to sing that song.

    Its just one more notch on the “its okay to hate fat people” belt that people wear so shamelessly.

    I agree that teachers are not to blame for starting or causing the bullying but any adult should be shamed for exacerbating or encouraging it!

  5. fashionablenerd Says:

    I’m adding my vote to the horrifying.

    And I’m wondering about how fat kids feel about having to sing this drivel. All this song does is facilitate bullying and harassment.

  6. Patsy Nevins Says:

    This is unspeakably horrifying & incredibly stupid & insensitive of the teacher, who must have a lot of antifat prejudice herself in order to do such a thing. I was an outsider, the ridiculed, harassed, & ostracized child, all through my school years, though because I have CP & was the only disabled child around rather than because of body size, though one high school classmate did manage to spend a month or two exercising his tiny brain to come up with “fat, ugly, crippled, four-eyed freak”, & there were constant taunts that I was a nerd/freak/weirdo/cripple & the boys teased each other that the last one leaving the locker room after gym loved Patsy Nevins. None of this stuff is fun or cute or amusing & it is NEVER a good or acceptable idea to teach ANY child prejudice, not even under the guise of a ‘fun’ holiday song. If you listen or read carefully, you can find that MANY ‘fun” children’s song or fairy tales are NOT ‘fun’ or harmless at all.

  7. Thorn Says:

    I agree – horrifying.

    Also? I think there’s a big difference between being offended by this and the people crusading to put Santa on a diet. The people crusading to put Santa on a diet are upset at the fictional fat of a fictional character. This is the actual song choices made by actual schoolteachers who instruct actual children to sing this fat-hating song.

    Even if the anti-fat crusades did succeed in convincing the world to put Santa on a diet, who would be hurt? There would be people who are annoyed and upset by it, but no one would be literally, directly injured by such a thing.

    Teachers encouraging children to sing this song will almost certainly increase incidences of harassment and abuse of fat children in those schools, which can cause actual harm to actual children, as “I Was A Fat Kid…” plainly demonstrates.

    That is the crucial difference, to my mind.

    (Also? Is it just me, or does it seem INCREDIBLY rude for teachers to encourage children to badmouth someone who purportedly comes and brings them presents out of nothing more than the goodness of their hearts, and in exchange for nothing more than good behavior which he does not even get to enjoy?)

  8. Mike R. Says:

    My last activity before switching schools (about 18 years ago) was to sing the part of Duane the Reindeer who was a “cute but chunky fellow” in the 7th grade Christmas show. (I’m of course fat and was studying for my bar mitzvah at the time). This, of course, was after years of merciless teasing. I look back and it’s like I lived through a war.

    Which may not be far from the truth. I read a psych paper a long time ago that compared victims of child abuse with the symptoms suffered by children in a war zone. It turned out that kids in either case were equally effected by their experiences. I would not be surprised if fat kids suffer similarly and this “Fat Santa” song is probably a crime against humanity.

  9. Krista Says:

    Horrifying. I have two fat kids and would hope I would call the school on this if it came up. I think I am at the point I would. BTW- the first link about blogging this song is a blank http tag. 🙂

  10. Sniper Says:

    The comments on this thread horrify me, but they also reinforce my belief that stopping this crap in the classroom is the right thing to do.

  11. Meowser Says:

    FU IS BACK!

    You have been missed, woman.

    I agree that it’s not cute. However, I also agree that these days, anyone who objects to something like this might as well be prepared to be boiled in oil along with all of her allegedly favorite foods.

    I can’t believe all the people who think a song like this would actually be healthy for fat kids to hear, that it would motivate them to eat their veggies and exercise and give up the Doritos and then they’ll just fit right in. But more likely it’s what you said, Fu — it’s a lot more likely they’ll develop serious depression and intractable eating disorders. And those things DO kill.

    Sometimes I just loathe my entire species. Present company excepted, of course.

  12. Brett Says:

    Well..in a world where we demystify EVERYTHING (including Santa) and force square pegs into round holes….I”m not surprised. On the surface, this seems like another cute – if not badly written – Christmas tune rewrite ripoff. But festering below, you have children learning how to judge. And I mean…the guy is bringing you gifts, for God’s sake! Grateful first, ya little brats!!

  13. Tish Says:

    I actually remember singing that song in fourth and fifth grade chorus. I’m 23 now, so that would have been…what, 1993? My role of “the fat girl” had come into full effect in fourth grade. My choir teacher was also a bigger woman and I believed she picked the song. At 9 years old, I remember feeling so sensitive and defensive to it, and I wondered why our teacher had picked it–wasn’t she sensitive to it, too?

    As an adult, I can finally acknowledge–that song hurt. It’s scary that it’s been around for so long. My vote is obviously for horrifying.

  14. Amber Fite Says:

    I can honestly say that I have never heard of this song, and I find it COMPLETELY horrifying!!! I would be mortified if I heard my child was a part of this teacher’s show, and I certainly would have them removed. I think that it is absolutely shameful that any teacher would consider this appropriate, and as a teacher-to-be I would hope that I will never be a member of a school that allows this to happen.
    Educators and parents should know better, children should never be allowed to think it is ok to make fun of anyone, regardless of who they are!!

  15. Meowser Says:

    Yes, and second that the word “teasing” makes it all seem kind of harmless. There was actually a fat boy in my elementary school who I rather liked, who (not knowing any better at age 10 or 11) I “teased” for being fat(ter than me). But I liked him. He was a good guy. He always seemed to laugh at my jokes about it. Had he ever said to me, “Please stop, you’re hurting me,” I’d have stopped in a second and never done it again. I shudder to think I might have done real damage to him and he just never showed it. Maybe not. Maybe to him it WAS “just harmless teasing.” But I suppose I will never know.

    P.S. I was actually picked at least as much if not more than he was — not for being fat necessarily, but for being capital-W weird in general. The adults who tell fat kids “lose weight and they won’t pick on you” just don’t get it; if kids want a torture target, they’ll make shit up about you in order to have one.

  16. mirianne Says:

    I believe this discussion could be extended to schools and parents, through programs focusing some classrooms and parents reunions. It would probably come up with a very different influence on thoughts and gestures; a lot more interesting than involving students in a (yes!) horrifying song.

  17. Tari Says:

    I just seat all day in front of the television and play video games and then just swallow every fatty-juicy oily- buttered-sugared- food…who cares.

    Hey, what say you take a break from the television and video games to crack a book every now and then? That way, when you want to spew trollish nonsense, you can do it intelligibly.

  18. Meowser Says:

    Aaaaand the last line of my last response is here illustrated in barfalicious technicolor: “If kids want a torture target, they’ll make shit up about you in order to have one.” That goes for kids of all ages, no?

  19. fatfu Says:

    Ultimo’s comment zapped on the grounds of inept trollery. I’m usually pretty negligent about removing trolls, but honestly. If you must troll, please keep it ept.

    To those of you who commented about your experiences – thank you – they’re really important to hear and talk about. I’ll plug again the I was a Fat Kid site for anyone who wants to add their story – that’s one project I’d like to see grow.

    Tish – I’m glad you said something about being forced to sing this yourself. I was cringing visualizing what this must have been like for the fat kids. It’s depressing to know this has been around for so long. I wonder how commonly it’s used? Like I said, I’d never run across it, but that means nothing.

    To the “how is this even cute?” comments. I know I know. My gut reaction was (and still is): oh. my. God. But I guess I’m also trying to acknowledge the other side, even if I reject it. The “cute harmless fun” side can make sense – but only if you think in a vacuum. e.g. in a world where fat children weren’t abused.

    Meowser – thanks for the wb 🙂 And you’re right, that cauldron of oil was on my mind. But I figured any charges of hypersensitive offenderati that get tossed this way aren’t all that bad compared to the gauntlet fat kids run every day. And I think most of us have been on both sides of the bullying – I can list more than a few occasions where I was cruel to some kid for this or that. Usually pretty unwittingly. But I rationalize by telling myself that being a kid is about being half feral. Which is why a teacher (intentionally or not) giving kids pointers in it is…um…horrifying.

    Krista – link fixed, thanks for letting me know.

  20. littlem Says:

    Horrifying.

    (Especially as a former fat kid, and a fat girl who didn’t go to prom.)

    Two ASCAP Awards and a Grammy nomination do not make it sting any less.

    That is all.

  21. Fatadelic Says:

    I am horrified that anyone would think that song is ok to sing. It is not funny. It is not cute.

    Let’s be frank – It is hate speech. It amounts to an incitement to harass, abuse, ‘tease’, shame and bully fat people. And yeah, fat kids would be the nearest, easiest and most vunerable target.

    Not OK.

    Shame on any teacher or adult who teaches kids this song.

  22. Jenny Says:

    OMG! Thats horrible!!

  23. Chad Jarbern Says:

    Yeah… so surprising that EVERY response is horrifying, given this blog’s name is Fat Fu…

  24. Sierra Says:

    Jut to clarify anything before I go any firther, I too was the fat kid in my elementary school.

    I was never in the realm of obese, just a little baby fat ina school full of stick thin kids whose parents had them in every sport and dance program possible.

    So I can sympathize with those who were the fat kid, who were picked on, and who think this song is hurtful.

    HOWEVER. I also think that all this whining about how we skinny people (which I am now, by the way, because I tried) don’t understand, and how it’s damagin for kids to hear that- don’t you think it’s DAMAGING for kids to hear that being fat is ok? There is NO REASON if a person makes an effort to excercise and to eat at least a LITTLE BIT right, then you shoudn’t be fat anymore.

    Being obese is not ok. And a child hearing that an OBESE man is too fat, well, that’s God’s honest truth. Any doctor would have told Santa the exact same thing. Being obese leads to heart disease, diabetes, increased risk of cancer, and many other things.

    What is so WRONG with telling kids that something WRONG actually is WRONG?

    Personally, I think the song is cute.

    This is the same drivel that kept my 4th grade class from being able to watch Aladin. Some Arabic kids parents threw a fit becuase the opening song says “where they cut off your ear if they don’t like your face.” And that was considered detrimental to us kiddies, giving us false impressions of Arabs.

    Don’t accuse me of being off topic. I think if anything I am right ON topic here.

    People just want something to bitch about.

  25. reallyred53 Says:

    I think it’s cute. I was in a school last year, and we all had to sing it in a musical for the end of the semester. It didn’t mean any harm, and it’s not talking about anyone but Santa, so it really shouldn’t offend any intelligent people.

  26. Sniper Says:

    Hey, trolls! Did someone leave a w indow open?

  27. Meowser Says:

    “If kids want a torture target, they’ll make shit up about you in order to have one.”

    Yeah. Definitely needs to be a t-shirt. And maybe a billboard, too.

  28. sestamibi Says:

    Any teacher who teaches such a song is teaching prejudice, pure and simple. You don’t have to be fat, or “average,” or thin (which I am), to feel this way. All you need to do is know the destructive power of a myth (“Jews are great shoppers and love money!” “All fat people eat “too much” and no thin people do!”) I have a neighborhood “friend” (the parent of a former classmate of my son’s) who makes the effort to socialize and genuinly seems to like me but always manages to get in a gibe about Jews and shopping (we get it wholesale, you know), and, of course, she has already sounded off on her feelings about those “touchy Jews — but not her friend, me, of course,” in case I should ever get up the nerve to criticize her “jokes.” This is a friend I plan to stay away from as much as living in the same neighborhood permits.

  29. Top Posts « WordPress.com Says:

    […] Cute or Horrifying? [image] posted by fatfu A music teacher leads her elementary school kids in singing the charming children’s […] […]

  30. Meowser Says:

    But sestamibi, you don’t have to be Jewish! It’s totally a choice! A century ago, thousands of Jews all across Europe changed their names and joined churches so nobody would ever know about their icky Jewishness. They tried to fit in and by gum, they succeeded! What an inspiration!

    Now, if someone could only tell me where my secret Jewish princess bank account is buried. I sure could use the money.

  31. Tari Says:

    Now, if someone could only tell me where my secret Jewish princess bank account is buried. I sure could use the money.

    I think I broke something laughing at this.

    Seriously, though, if we were rich, we could quit our jobs and all our extracurriculars and start starving ourselves properly full time, like good little fatties. We could hire nutritionists and personal trainers and personal chefs and coaches to keep our fatty-fat-fat fingers from reaching for the donuts.

    Apparently I broke my ability to suppress sarcasm.

  32. Lindsay Says:

    Sierra said: “What is so WRONG with telling kids that something WRONG actually is WRONG?”

    Absolutely nothing.

    But what’s so WRONG about being fat? How is it a moral imperative to be not-fat?

    For that matter – isn’t physical discrimination wrong?

    Isn’t bullying wrong?

    Isn’t it wrong to judge a person’s moral character based on their size, shape, color or gender?

    So again, i ask you: how is it wrong to be fat? And why? What is your justification for this? On what basis have you come to this conclusion.

    I eagerly look forward to your response, Sierra.

  33. lurkinghorror Says:

    Hi. I think at first glance this is adult humor on the level of Southpark without the f-bombs. THe teacher was a b*tch with something to prove who wrote this. Face it, Santa Clause, Fat and Jolly was a sign of health and happiness, generosity and wealth, goodness and the hope for new year combined with the stored up foodstuffs from the harvest of the year. He’s just the sort of chap you’d hope for if you’re hungry or it’s in the middle of a gloomy winter. I think that COMBATTING SANTA WITH ANTI FAT PROPAGANDA LIKE THE SONG ABOVE IS MALEVOLENT. Remember when they made the cookie monster say a cookie is a sometimes thing? Anyone going along with ideas of singing this song to “FIGHT OBERSITY” is lying to themselves. There’ve been big people and skinny people just like there are big and skinny animals since we’ve all been evolving. Not to say some people aren’t greedy or slothful or utterly without manners. But what about fat on a person as a sign of someone who relishes life? That big belly made kids laugh like the red nose on rudolph. If we focus on fat kids and people we need to see how the world has changed tol this isnlt like when I was a kid and parents could just send kids outdoors all day to play no questions asked. Sure we had tv. But we weren;t hooked into it or the internet via an ubilical cord and while the moms were afraid of kidnappers there was no where near the level of anxiety today. People weren’t hearing about kids snatched out of the back and front yards let alone their beds in their houses while their parents were HOME! THe big case where that happened: Lindebergh, back in the day. Sure you could dig up some others. BUt you can bet your sweet hypo=obesity-chondriac self that was no exscuse for not playing hard. Hey, you want kids and people to stop being so obese? Stop living in fear and take back parks and playgrounds for playing, get real about crime and get out there and take it back from the media and the pedophiles and rapists and thieves, carjackers, and drug dealers.

  34. behindhiddendoors Says:

    i admit, when i read the lyrics for the first time up there, i thought it was cute. and i even thought about it for a while – it was discouraging obesity, which is something i think people should be doing. but apparently i didn’t think about it enough, and i think a lot of people don’t usually think about things like this enough. when you get to “cute”, you don’t usually look much further.

    thanks for the perspective check. i used to only see obesity as a problem – we don’t have as many obese people in our country, and bullying is not as rampant, so i never really thought about the obesity from the perspective of the real victim – the child. so thanks, this is a nice post. and the link to “i was a fat kid” is very helpful.

    my vote for the song is that it is cute. it is funny, it plays on santa’s much adored fatness, which is something that identifies him. the song, in my opinion, is neither moral or immoral. it’s either a good song or a bad song, in which case this song is good. because it’s cute.

    leading children in singing it in an environment where children are already prejudiced against fat kids however is horrifyingly insensitive, or criminally stupid. or just plain cruel. i think that teacher should be held responsible for every single act of abuse resulting from her teaching the children the song.

  35. lurkinghorror Says:

    As a last remark, I was a poor, skinny kid with a single mom and the only time I got sweets was around the holidays. My mom was always hard nosed about nutrition, but now I look back knowing it was more because we were poor than nutrition that we didn’t get treats a little kmore often. The cupboard was sparse at times. I loved all that Santa represented that I mentioned above. Happy, jolly, wealthy and merry. And my mom did her best every Christmas to make sure Santa had something for us.

  36. lurkinghorror Says:

    d’oh. Cute if it was written by a ten year old, and as a joke by the kid. Horrifying in today’s polarized environment.

  37. wroscoe Says:

    It is not cute, and there are much better things to teach children.

  38. grpp Says:

    I think the song is horrifying. Its not only the song its what is on tv they broadcast shows that tell our kids its cool to skinny to be able to wear those tiny shorts, jeans so tight. What else advertisements whens the last time you seen women of size in an advertisement. I was and still am that fat boy. I got teased in school chased home from school. I had a shitty childhood Well I can honestly say that it wasnt so much that school made me feel like the fat kid that everybody picked on. it would be the physical and mental abuse that my stepfather but me through. but now I look back on my school days I dont remember that song at all.

  39. Victoria Says:

    Fat kids shouldn’t be picked on, they should be helped. Give them free gym passes and nutrition therapy.
    The song is funny, but masks the real issue that kids need to know that simply being fat from laziness and bad eating habits isn’t acceptable instead of being told its ok because there’s always an excuse for everything nowadays.

  40. Meowser Says:

    because there’s always an excuse for everything nowadays.

    …including refusing to familiarize yourself with actual research about fat not funded by diet and pharmaceutical companies when it’s only a few mouse clicks away, because then you’d have to take our fat asses off your dartboard and then you’d be stuck hating people only on the basis of closely observed behavior rather than assumed behavior, which would be so not fun.

    But thanks for, um, playing.

  41. My Comment Was Zapped! « Joomla! Newyork Says:

    […] 27, 2007 First time it happened. The reason as what the blogger says, Ultimo’s comment zapped on the grounds of inept trollery. I’m usually pretty negligent about rem… I wish I could post it here what I wrote, but it was an unacceptable comment known to the blogger […]

  42. Fatadelic Says:

    …because then you’d have to take our fat asses off your dartboard and then you’d be stuck hating people only on the basis of closely observed behavior rather than assumed behavior, which would be so not fun.

    Go, Meowser!

  43. cyclepromo Says:

    I’ve never heard this version of the song and if I heard my kids singing it I’d be horrified.

  44. Communist Radio Says:

    Let me get this straight: You people are offended and horrified by a song about a child who thinks that Santa is fat?

    Let’s review why a song about Santa being fat is harmless:

    1. He’s a fictional character.

    End.

  45. mamavision Says:

    As a mom with a 4 year old boy and 7 year old daughter, I am careful with my words. I often see individuals being called “fat” in books and it just isn’t kind or appropriate. I believe I have taught my children to understand that we are all different, large and small, and size is irrelevant.

    As a blogger committed to the other end of the spectrum, eating disorders and “pro anorexia” as a lifestyle choice, I find this video just…sad.
    -mamaV

  46. Yuriko Says:

    I guess they rewrote Jingle Bells when I wasn’t looking. I don’t like this version at all. The children are cute.. but the song itself is inappropriate. The next thing you know, some kid will start sing.. “Oh, Benjamin, Benjamin, you are much to fat… or ugly or dumb…” Kids can be mean.. I guess that’s because they’re kids.. but why encourage it?

  47. moodyhoney Says:

    i think it’s horrifying.
    well yes, maybe some would disagree saying that it’s a mere child’s song. but every comment posted here along with Fu’s explanation about the whole gravity of it, beg’s to differ.

    song’s like this should NOT be taught or encouraged at all. i can’t imagine being an overweight kid having to sing that song and then being teased as ‘Santa’ by all the other kids who sing along to it. and having the only adult around the whole time – meaning the teacher – doing nothing about it, perhaps even laughing along thinking it’s all ‘cute’!

    i don’t think any child song should have anything containing prejudice in it. it just ruins the innocense it’s suppose to have. not to mention that it has very massive negative effects in the long run on the children that feel ‘different’.

  48. Jersey Says:

    I was fat. I was called fatty or fat-girl (up till 8th grade). Teachers did squat. My mother always pressured me to lose weight to attract the boys. My sister pressured constantly she wanted a thin, popular sister no one made fun of. My gay friends thought I would be one “mamita” if I could lose the extra weight and finally purchase some hot (aka slutty or wayyy too sexy) clothes. I was called butch, a lesbian, a transgender.

    I always dressed in sweats and jeans. My weight bubbled between 160 and 180 in HS. I never became anorexic or bulimic, only because I never heard of them till junior year of HS. My (straight, very attractive female and male) friends took me for me. I joked about my weight, as humor masked any discomfort I did have about my weight, and helped bring optimism when I needed it most. Church folk loved me for me.

    Certain memories I hate. Certain memories I cherish. I turned out fine, I I was 30 pounds overweight before getting pregnant, at 165 lbs. I lost weight by finally getting rid of the junk food and (cuss word) food I had in the fridge and went vegetarian and exercised, trading in car rides for bicycling and walking everywhere. I lost 50 pounds, THE REAL AND HEALTHY WAY.

    And after the baby is born, I’m going to work out like you-know-what till I reach that 130 lbs I should be weighing.

  49. ultimoAdios Says:

    Now that I learned my lesson, I will start all over again. The song was just plain mean and disgraceful. My 10 years old knows better than that!

  50. fatfu Says:

    Ultimo will you stop obsessing?

  51. Bobby Says:

    I find this repugnant. Perhaps adults too high on Prozac seem to have forgotten that kids find any way to tease, belittle, berate, and exclude. It doesn’t take long to imagine a rendition of this song edited to insert a victim’s name, and since these are elementary kids, they believe Santa is real. Way to encourage gratitude, folks. Bullying hurts. There is simply no excuse for it, it just is. This song enables bullying. Res ipsa loquitur.

  52. ultimoAdios Says:

    my apology ladyfu, it will not happen again. i just want to make things right.

  53. kileigh7 Says:

    I have to blame both the teacher and the music director here. In most school districts, the music director approves the song selection, especially ones that are performed in public. In my district, this would have never, ever gotten past the tough-as-nails director. This teacher should be horrified that these children are singing this. As a child that was teased mercilessly for lots of things, I vote for the horrifying. Children are increasingly crueler than they were even 5 years ago, and the past 3 classes that have come through my room, well, each have been nastier than the last. How can someone truly think that this is ok?

  54. chasingmyshadow Says:

    fact: Santa Claus IS far too fat.

    The icon of santa claus is a largely corporate engineered one, encouraging excesses in every way from presents to over-indulgence in food.

    I don’t see any problem with the song in itself. If children are bullying more than ever today, the song will not add to or detract from that. Bullying is a problem that needs to be addressed in itself, censoring certain media is not the way to go.

    And being overweight on the magnitude of Santa Claus is the way to diabetes and heart disease. The song tells no lies.

  55. Viral Trivedi Says:

    of course horryfying!

  56. suchabrunette Says:

    I’m not sure how I’d feel having to sing that. I’m over weight and it would seem awkward for me to have to sing about someone else being fat. I was always over weight in elementary and middle school – so who would I be to be singing, even about a fictional character, being fat.

    I know I teach high school and my kids would have loved to hear that. I think I’ll be skipping that song next year 🙂

  57. mohd222 Says:

    wow hilarious post there! Happy new year =)
    http://www.mohd222.wordpress.com
    keep up the good work 😉
    ~Mohd222 A.K.A ~~~~~~~~~~~~> Mohderator =)

  58. MisstressM Says:

    I dont really see anything cute about the song. It may be a joke to the teacher but the children are learning nothing by it. The scariest thing is that some of the teachers in todays schools dont really care what they teach or how they teach. Its simply a paycheck. Comparing my first grade teacher to that of my daughter’s is a difference of night and day.

    Thanks for the post

  59. figg Says:

    Can I just say that I believe the real issue here is what the song teaches the kids who DON’T struggle with maintaining a healthy weight. How many of those kids compensate for the struggles in THEIR lives with drugs, premarital sex at a very early age, anger, and an array of other things, things which don’t have as obvious a result as perhaps food, and yet…because the result of food is visible, the “skinny” kids are allowed to think they’re somehow better and more acceptable than the kids who aren’t. Society has given them permission not only to judge, but also to punish people who deal with this challenging issue. Anyone who struggles with their weight is really struggling with much bigger issues, be it metabolic challenges that they can’t help or emotional and mental turmoil. And once a poor self-image develops, it breeds further hopelessness and shame, which destroys, in many cases, the will and belief that there can be a change. (And this issue is the same across the board with any child who is deemed “different” in appearance or demeanor)
    Any teacher who would flagrantly select a song that highlights THIS issue, is (inadvertantly, or otherwise, and may I say…I wouldn’t want someone with judgement this poor within “influence” range of MY child) reinforcing descrimination, hatred, judgement and mockery. And “cute” is just another word for “subtle”…it’s like telling someone “oh, that dress looks so much better on you than the one you wore last year”….a coward’s way of getting a dig in, without having to take responsibility for the fact that what’s really happening is cruel and hurtful…and kids aren’t idiots, they aborb what’s going on.

    I will say that I unequivocally I agree that obesity shouldn’t be encouraged for health reasons, I also know that making someone feel bad about themselves doesn’t inspire change, it digs the grave deeper. And sadly, it seems as though there is a generation being raised by the media in so many ways that it would seem commonplace to a TEACHER to select such a song. Are our children growing up to care only about making themselves seem “better” through highlighting the challenges of others, instead of encouraging those around them.? My verdict is most wholeheartedly; Horrifying.

  60. Robert Easter Says:

    The pity of it is, in this enlightened day, that the teacher in question can continue with this kind of psycho-torture, totally oblivious to its consequences, possibly compensating for some school-days trauma of her (?) own by taking it out on school children. She (?) is held in tenure instead of being held accountable.

  61. greenwebdesign Says:

    I vote horrifying. For those saying things like “well, he is too fat”… you’re missing the point.

    Teaching children that it’s OK and even “funny” or “cute” to make fun of a fat person is not OK. They are nasty enough all on their own without any encouragement. And as others mentioned, making fun of a guy who selflessly brings you presents and gets NOTHING out of it for himself, is just plain bratty, ungrateful, and rude. Unfortunately, too many children are just that, because the adults in their lives are too busy or self absorbed to teach them how to be decent, kind, loving people.

    I was always the chubby girl who got picked on throughout school – but I was also a high honors student, had an IQ in the 140’s, and took special gifted classes – not to mention being a really nice, polite kid who always helped my teachers with any special projects they needed done, and always helped other kids with their homework – but instead of being known as the smart girl, or the nice girl, etc. I was known as the fat girl and I was picked on by insensitive, brain dead morons.

    Of course nowadays I look back and realize that they didn’t pick on me because I was fat – they picked on me because they were stupid. But if you had told me that when I was a kid suffering through the hell known as adolescence, it wouldn’t have made me feel any better about the situation.

  62. Tom Davidson Says:

    When did Bigotry 101 get into the curriculum?

  63. a ditadura da regulação da gordura - ou não - alheia « blog Says:

    […] Vejam isto, é um ótimo exemplo… e um tremendo […]

  64. temper212 Says:

    The song is NOT cute, and for more reasons than just the weight issues.

    I know for a FACT that kids would have put my name in place of Santa’s, which would have made me MORE depressed and MORE suicidal. Stuff like this made me feel that my only option was to stop eating- and I did, for a few years, suffer anorexia. I still suffer the thoughts and tendancies.

    But moreso than that, as it was pointed out before in this thread, the song glorifies a kid who is being A TOTAL BRAT TO THE MAN WHO IS GIVING HIM GIFTS— and it paints Santa as somewhat ill-tempered. He stands up and yells “I WANT CAKE!” ?? The concern is not about Santa’s WELFARE- The concern is that Santa is going to SIT ON YOU.

    Kids a brat. Songs not cute.

  65. temper212 Says:

    Oh, and not all fat people eat junk food.

    I play roller derby- a Highly competitve sport that uses a lot of physical strength, endurance, and tons of cardio is involved. Yes, I eat chocolate, but never more than a serving (except on holidays!), and other than that I adhere to correct portions and plenty of veggies- I wouldn’t want all that food-weight to slow me down on the rink!

    So- lazy, junk food eaters?
    Screw you! I will not be anorexic again!

  66. Sarah Says:

    I see the trolls are out in full force – telling us fatties if we would JUST exercise and eat right, we would all be beautiful and thin! And Santa is just TOO fat and Christmas is just SO evil and capitalism is SO EVIL and making us ALL FAT!

    Here’s my message to you – FUCK OFF.

  67. Sarah Says:

    Ultimo, get a life. And that goes for the rest of the fat haters here. Maybe if you had an actual life, you wouldn’t have to tell the rest of us what do to with ours.

  68. Sarah Says:

    temper212, the same people who chide us for being fat would probably applaud us for being anorexic. Hey, at least we’re thin and healthy now!

  69. Shannon Says:

    That is horrifying and absurd. What possessed that teacher to think that would be a cute thing to sing about?

  70. johnnypeepers Says:

    Sweet post, and very enlightening. The government must do more to crack down on rogue teachers who indoctrinate our children with weight-hate propaganda. It is genes and glands people – get over it. Your obsession with bodily perfection indicates you worship an Earthly temple – not the Lord’s Word.

  71. blueollie Says:

    Folks, I owe many of you an apology. I’ll just explain why my comment showed up and why I got here in the first place.

    My “comment” showed up because I put a link to this post in my personal blog.

    The only reason I found this post was it was listed as a “hot post” on the WordPress dashboard. Normally, I wouldn’t have noticed the text, but the avatar caught my eye: a “rubenesque woman” in tight jeans, from behind; that is what caught my eye.

    There is no easy way to say it, but, well, there are some of us who like that sort of thing. THAT is what drew me to this post to begin with.

    I commented on it because I am an ex 320 pounder (6 feet tall) and I get very mixed feelings when “fat topics” are discussed.

    On one hand, I hated being fat and never want to go back. On the other hand, when I hear fat people being attacked, I still feel attacked.

    Anyway, sorry for the unintended “trollish” comment that appeared because of the link I put in my blog.

  72. Apology to Fatfu « blueollie Says:

    […] to Fatfu A couple of days ago, I found this post in the “hot post” section of the WordPress […]

  73. Jackie Says:

    Cute? How is this cute? I mean, I’m a fan of Anime and Japanese culture in general, and I like to think I know something about cute. This ain’t it.

    If you changed it about Santa being fat, and something else. Like I don’t know, let’s just say for an example, if you switched the word fat with something racist. Then going on about that theme. Nobody, and I mean nobody, would stand for that for one hot minute. Yeah, but having children sing a song that basically is almost like Nazi-esque propaganda against fat people yeah.

    The reason you might think it sounds cute, is because they’re hiding the propaganda under a facade of cute. Like if they used a giant hampster in a wage on war. Everyone would be like “Awww..cutteee…WAAAAAAHHH!” That’s what this is like. By the way, the hampster example is from an episode of Invader Zim.

    It’s the same sort of crap they pulled when they made racist kiddy songs during the time when there was seperation based on the color of people’s skin. An example is the original version Fe-Fi-Fo-Fum. It being cute does not make it right. It’s still wrong. It’s still poisioning children’s brains with hate rehtoric.

    I don’t know if even suggesting this might lead to more school shootings, via bullying, would stop this. Since of course, we know that all school shooters are psycho murderers, with a taste for blood. That their rampages certainly, aren’t a response to years of ignored abuse of them by the schools. Yes, that was sarcasm. Most students shoot people at their schools, after years of experience psychological torment at behest of their peers, while our school faculties just look the other way. Like, if the idea of 50 innocent students being murdered isn’t enough to curtail bullying, I don’t know what is.

    I saw footage of a fat student on TV, who did shoot up his school. No doubt, as I imagine, after years of torment for being fat. When you keep pressing people’s buttons, they’re likely to want to strike back. I know myself how depressing it is to experience non-stop psychological abuse from students AND teachers at public schools. You really do start feeling paranoid, and as if it’s you against them. This song might as well be having the kids singing, about shooting up students.

    Heck, let’s just do like that Battle Royal movie, and send kids off to an island to beat the crap out of each other and give a prize to whomever survives. That really isn’t that far from how it is psychologically in schools these days. This song is far from innocent. Teaching children how to hate is WRONG. As I’ve said, the only thing I remember learning from school is how to hate. What happened to education, and learning. Not this dog eat dog BS.

  74. Chassie Leigh Says:

    Omg… How in the worl could you EVER say this song is CUTE!?!!?!? This is TERRIBLE! There are sooo many things wrong with this song… omg. How could you even have students sing this? What were they thinking!?

  75. Jackie Says:

    I just read your post Sierra. Your unwavering insensitivity to all those, who don’t “Just get over things” and conform is remarkable.

    I doubt you’d go here, but please visit:

    http://www.bigfatfacts.com

    I say I doubt you’d go there, because you seem like the kind of person who’d pass off the facts as “Fat people claiming a conspiracy theory on behalf of the diet industry” Seriously, someone actually told me that gem.

    Secondly, how do you know you wouldn’t have been considered obese when you were younger, based on the standards today? You know the BMI acceptable levels, are always turning towards the thinner ideal. As it says on Big Fat Facts, when the BMI came out millions of people became obese overnight.

    Being fat shouldn’t be an issue. You claim it would just be as bad for kids being told being obese is fine, vs being told being obese is bad. How about the novel concept, that we shouldn’t even be discussing what is or isn’t obese in front of children? What ever happened to the concept that children are deserving of a childhood?

    If things were right being fat, would be an inert issue. It’d be like, hating someone over the fact they didn’t like the same ice cream flavor you did. It’d be that much of a non-issue.

    If it was as simple as people exercising and eating right, do you think anyone would be fat? I mean, in this society where being fat means constant discrimination and harassment on basis of ignorant people’s concern about your health. There’s something called genetics. Ok let me say it slower gen-et-ic-s. It means that people are born with a certain DNA, that says wether or not they will be a certain body type and size. If someone is born with the genetics that they will be bigger, than they will be bigger.

    The only way someone who is destined genetically to be larger, to become what people consider now to be a “normal” weight, would be to have a eating disorder. Oh and don’t tell me about dieting. Doesn’t the obessive calorie counting, and food obsessing sound like…oh I don’t know, Anorexia?

    I hope in the future Sierra, you are able to see things from a perspective other than your own. Trust me, it makes life much easier. From your comments, I’d guess you’re a angry teen. I mean, tell me if I’m wrong, but it just hits me that way. Hopefully someday you will mature, and realize that there are many different shades of grey to issues. They are not black and white, right or wrong. That’s the way of the world.

  76. experimentia Says:

    Kids can be so cruel. This song is trash, but, this is what happens when schools can’t promote classic Christmas songs because of religious themes.

  77. j cozatt Says:

    Incredibly poor taste! What was the encore? Jingle bells batman smells … I would expect to hear this in a school yard, not the auditorium. If anyone even considered teaching something like this I would be having a serious discussion with the principle. Sorry but it’s not “cute”, it ‘s just mean spirited. I would expect this out of a disillusioned teen. I have to agree with others, it encourages ingratitude. Santa maybe imaginary but I suspect most parents don’t really want kids complaining about all the things “Santa”screwed up on Christmas morning.

  78. Colin Wright Says:

    Since I weigh 250-260 I feel entitled to comment: the video is pretty harmless — and pretty funny.

    Some people get too wrapped up in their own victimhood. Everyone has their cross to bear — and you can try making the rest of the world be kind to you, but it ain’t gonna happen.

    If anything, what’s pathetic isn’t people who are fat; it’s people who cry about how others are mean to them on that account. Being fat isn’t a plus — but there are worse fates.

  79. Rebecca2993 Says:

    I was in 8th grade last year and 7th grade sang this song. I, being overweight forever, was mortified. It was the music teacher’s last year and the first Christmas concert. But, it was still disgusting.

    There are so many kids on stage who are overweight blushing and the other kids laughing and poking at them. Poor kids.

    I hate people who hate fat people!

  80. Lexie Says:

    I was teased all through school… even in high school. I remember in junior high, boys would push each other towards me and say “Hey! Isn’t that your girlfriend?” while the guy would struggle to stay as far away from me as possible. I dreaded health class because we always talked about the food pyramid… once, a boy waited for me after class and threw M&Ms at me and said “What? Not going to eat it, fat ass?!”
    It was worse in high school. A boy harassed me all through my junior and senior year. He’d sexually harass me and call me names. Once, he even ran up on me holding something cut into the shape of a knife and said “I’m going to fucking kill you!” and then followed me to class growling. I’d gone to my counselor numerous times over both school years but he’d do nothing. He sat straight faced as I weeped and begged him to make it stop. Finally, I walked up to the guy and was surrounded by his friends and asked him what scared him so much. What happened in his life that hurt him and made him feel like he should hurt me? In the end, my mom got into it and the school expelled him. (Which is not something I really wanted. I just wanted it to stop.) I was harassed by his friends for getting him expelled.

  81. Cassy Says:

    I remember this song from when I was a fat kid. The thin kids would sing it at me. All the damn time. That an adult would teach this song to children who otherwise might never have known it horrifies me on a level so deep it’s hard to express it coherently.

  82. Sun Says:

    Whoever wrote this song is a huge bigot, and they will get what’s coming to them in the end, when their thin bodies are racked with disease they don’t have the FAT to help fight. I taught jr. high/middle school for 3 years, and this is like giving the bullies a loaded gun. If I EVER catch this song being sung in the schools here, I WILL be filing a lawsuit.

  83. Anna Says:

    Wow. Um.

    I’m with you on this. Cute in a vacuum, horrifying in context. It’s using a sterotype with Santa demanding cake, so I don’t like it. If it was a sterotype about anything else, I’d be just as disgruntled.

    Man, reading these stories about teasing makes me glad I came from a school where most of the teasing was behind people’s backs. I was fat, yes, but I was also much stronger than the other kids. They say violence doesn’t solve anything? Bull. I stopped being picked on the second I walked up to one of the kids doing it and punched him in the stomach. I wasn’t a fast runner, so sometimes the kids would throw a rock or say something nasty then run away – not counting on the fact that I had classes with them and was smarter to boot. I think most of them believed their actions wouldn’t have consequences, so were rather stunned when I fought back.

    Ah yes. The last boy who picked on me would have been…year five I believe. I used an empty stapler and convinced him that staples couldn’t go through human skin. He needed to get sitches I believe.

    Of course, this wouldn’t work for everyone, and I hate that. I hate that we can’t tell kids that standing up for yourself and believeing in yourself would be enough.

    • Anna Says:

      Oh whoops, I didn’t see the date on this, it only just came up on my feed. Sorry for commenting on something long dead!


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