(…or what I do instead of writing philosophy papers.)
Whilst reading the comics over at bustygirlcomics.com, I came across a rather disturbing “ask”. It read:
Honestly I feel that girls who are overweight do not have the right to complain about or glorify their big boobs. I know a girl who lost a lot of weight to be normal weight and she went from a 36G to 32 DD. There is no way you can refute that some girls are “big boned” because genetics have the smallest impact on weight in fact its only a maximum genetic variation of 5kg. I don’t mean to attack anyone (just an opinion),but save the complaining to the girls who are normal weight with big boobs.
Ignoring the grammatical issues/dubious word usage, I want to respond to this, because it’s just flat out incorrect… there are false premises and terrible logical mistakes.
A. As I read it, the implied argument/conclusion is:
- If person X is capable of dropping a few cupsizes, then person X does not have the right to complain about having large breasts. (implied premise)
- Sally was overweight and had large breasts. She lost weight and dropped a few cupsizes. (premise)
- Overweight people will drop cupsizes if they lose weight. (generalization, supposedly from 2)
- Overweight people are fat because they don’t try to lose weight. Fat people are capable of losing weight. (premise)
- Overweight people are capable of dropping a few cupsizes. (modus tollens, 3 and 4)
- .: Overweight people do not have the right to complain about having large breasts. (modus tollens, 1 and 5)
B. Analysis of Argument/Problems:
- Premise 1 is reasonable enough that I will grant the writer premise 1. (But really, policing other people’s bodies is pointless.)
- The writer knows “a girl who lost a lot of weight to be normal weight and she went from a 36G to a 32DD”. Well now, that’s wonderful… but how on earth does she derive the generalization that all overweight people will drop cup sizes if they lose weight? It simply does not follow. Example: I know a penguin named Alvin. Therefore, all penguins are named Alvin. Um, it just doesn’t work that way. (And can you imagine a scientific study being done that way? Eek! You want a large group to study so that you can control for other factors!)
- Good God that is just blatantly, factually incorrect. When I was anorexic, I lost 30 lbs (it took me a year, due to my thyroid problems) and GREW in the breast, so we’ve already got one counterexample. Some people lose breast fat when they lose weight… but many people don’t. You can’t generalize that.
- Ugh. I addressed this the other day. Even IF I would drop cup sizes if I lost weight, I can’t lose weight. I exercise and eat 1200 calories a day just to maintain being overweight instead of gaining weight… when I figure out my thyroid medication, that will hopefully change, but as it stands, I cannot lose weight. So even if I would drop cup sizes with weight loss, I’m not capable of weight loss. Oh, hey! Look! I’m a counterexample again!
- If 3 and 4 weren’t dead wrong, 5 would be okay.
- Follows from 1 and 5, but 5 is derived from false premises.
So basically almost everything about that argument is just wrong. It’s based on false premises and the argument itself isn’t even valid. I can handle people saying “offensive” things, so long as the premises are true and the arguments are valid… but if you don’t have something reasonable to say, don’t say anything at all.