Body-positive model Iskra Lawrence is speaking out in support of Nike.
ICYMI, the athletic brand recently came under fire after unveiling its new, plus-sized mannequin (see above, insert) at their flagship store location in London, UK.
The inclusive store display, which also includes para-sport mannequins, was initially met with wide praise… until one critic decided to poke holes in the brand’s alleged mixed messaging.
The most notable negative response to Nike’s stand for diversity came from a writer for The Telegraph named Tanya Gold.
In truly poor taste, the author argued the new mannequin is actually sending the wrong message to consumers and called out the “terrible cynicism” of the whole campaign.
“She is immense, gargantuan, vast. She heaves with fat. She is, in every measure, obese, and she is not readying herself for a run in her shiny Nike gear. She cannot run. She is, more likely, pre-diabetic and on her way to a hip replacement.”
Oh my. Someone actually wrote that statement, read it back to themselves, and still thought this was okay to say. Sigh…
As expected, the controversial review was immediately trashed on Twitter for being unfair, disgusting, and down right wrong. But this is where Iskra comes in to speak her peace!
In response, the #AerieReal model took it upon herself to speak up on behalf of the outrage everywhere.
She complied a bunch of screen grabs from social media users expressing their anger over Gold’s words, and delivered a lengthy, measured response to the viral review.
See her Instagram post (below):
Lawrence aptly calls out The Telegraph writer and anyone who agrees with the hurtful and inaccurate sentiments she expressed in her piece.
The social media influencer straight up called this whole debate for what it is, saying:
“This is fatphobia, shaming other people’s bodies and passing judgement on their health is not your business, and excluding diverse bodies is the opposite of progress.”
We mean, seriously. Who does Tanya think she is to openly fat shame her audience or anyone, ever, like that?! For the record, we absolutely disagree with her classless and inaccurate claims about health and personal body image.
But truthfully, Iskra said it all! Read her caption in full (below):
“Been struggling to condense and put into words how I feel about backlash that @nike have received after introducing plus-size mannequins.
This is fatphobia, shaming other people’s bodies and passing judgement on their health is not your business, and excluding diverse bodies is the opposite of progress.
I’ve been the nearer the size of a traditional mannequin (US4/6-UK8/10) and I’m currently nearer the size of the new plus size mannequin.
News flash – I am more healthy NOW than I was when I was thinner – because being skinny does not equal being healthy.
Yet if I asked fat phobic people, they would ASSUME that I was healthier the thinner I was.
Firstly no one should need to prove this – secondly I’m nearly 200lbs of “I will kick your a$$ in a sprint, boxing jumping and lifting over half my body weight”👍
But regardless of my story and personal health journey how dare you try and disallow other humans from being represented.
Everyone has the right to look after their bodies regardless of the size they wear or where their current fitness level or health is.
Someone’s health is their greatest gift and shaming and exclusion makes it so much harder for anyone to look after themselves or guess what, have flippin gym clothes to even go and move their bodies.
Seeing a mannequin, having access to clothing in your size encourages inclusion and promotes diverse bodies taking part in fitness (whatever that looks like to them)
Also if they choose to wear they shiny new fire Nike leggings to watch TV – that’s also OK🙄
There is so so much more I would love to say but I’ll just leave you with this.
All bodies deserve representation, inclusion and to know they are worthy of being loved and taken care of.
For too long it’s been believed if you cannot see you cannot be.
Well diverse bodies aren’t invisible and aren’t going anywhere so get ready to see them everywhere
In the end, the jokes on Miz Gold as her foolish and irresponsible words actually sparked another huge wave of support for Nike.
Multiple women have already posted their own inspiring photos, rocking Nike sports gear. Let this be a lesson that positivity and inclusion will always win! And we as a society will continue to fight for representation, no matter what salty, naysayers have to say about it.
Thoughts, Perezcious readers? Tell us in the comments below!
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