One day a man woke up and decided he'd had enough. Things would have to change.
He was bone-weary of discrimination and shame and reproach. The way he could feel people looking at him, mocking him — sometimes subtly, sometimes not. The way people talked about him, about people like him. The sneering, caricatured representations in movies. Everywhere, the pressure, the rejection — singling him out as a second-class citizen, as substandard, as (at best) silly and ridiculous, or (at worst) weak and deficient. Not good enough.
But it was all ignorance and lies. He was born this way. God made him the way he was. He could never recall a time when he was any different. And no one had a right to say it was wrong.
He'd tried to change, and his efforts had always failed. So, early in life, he'd accepted the way he was. He'd told his parents and friends that he was what he was, and they must accept him as such. Stop pressing him to change. The way he lived was natural to him, and he wasn't going to spend his life in misery and guilt trying to change something he not only was powerless to change, but had no real reason to change.
So, now fed up, he found ways to take legal action, and political action. He formed PACs and organizations. It took years, and money, and a lot of hard work. But finally he had success.
Victory came the year that his state's legislature passed, and the Supreme Court upheld, the "Bariatric Freedom Act." It was now there, set in law: anyone weighing under four thousand pounds must be called "thin," and must be protected from all forms of discrimination.
The ramifications were instantaneous, and widespread.
Medical research was funded for the purpose of proving that all weight-ranges were equally healthy. What were formerly viewed as health-risk factors were attributed to negative societal pressure and stereotyping. Medical groups redefined their weight charts and standards to accommodate and approve all weight-ranges equally.
Clothing stores were required by law to carry shirts in sizes up to 10X, pants in sizes up to 125 waist, 27 inseam, and dresses up to size 75. It became illegal for WalMart, Kmart, or any other store, to charge more for "extra" sizes, since that category was rendered illegal. Any clothiers with terms like "big" and "large" in their titles found themselves athwart the law, with all people now legally "thin." Thousands of small clothing stores went out of business in the first year, and department stores took to selling only one pattern, since the size-range took up their entire department. (Then the government took over the clothing industry.)
Businesses who used visual ads were required by law to prove that they employed models of every weight-range equally. Alternately, they were permitted to hire "blind," using a number system, contracting models sight-unseen. Gyms were required to install equipment equally accommodating every weight; their instructors were required to tell every customer that he was at his perfect weight, and shouldn't change. (The government took over that industry after three months.) Body-building competitions were required completely to rewrite their criteria, and closed down after one month.
Surgeons who performed liposuction and other plastic surgeries were required to document recommending lipo-insertion surgery to patients who weighed under 4000 pounds.
Airlines were required to install an equal amount of roomy, extra-size seats. This cut the amount of tickets they could sell per flight by 50%. They were also prohibited from raising prices to compensate. When every airline declared bankruptcy the following week, the government took over the airlines. Inter-state travel ground to a halt.
Movie studios became vulnerable to lawsuits if their products contained language or materials discriminatory to "alternative bodystyles." Movies and TV shows went into production portraying the "ample" lifestyle as healthy, happy, normal and desirable.
Gymnastic and other sports events were required to issue "weight-suits" to the competitors, bringing their body-weight up to the national average. Ratings plummeted, and eventually the events were taken over and hosted exclusively by foreign nations. Athletes emigrated en masse.
The automotive industry was required to manufacture cars that accommodated any size driver. (After a month, the government took over that industry as well.) Restaurants had to retool all chair-to-table ratios, to make sure all diners could fit comfortably. Charging extra for "super-sized" meals was prohibited.
Anyone telling a "fat-joke," or in any way making an "alternatively bodied" individual feel bad about his profile, could be found guilty of a hate-crime. Social workers were authorized to do a family profile, to mandate sensitivity re-education, and even to take custody of children, if any child was found taunting other children because of their weight.
Girls (or men) who declined invitations to dates could be sued and forced to prove that weight played no factor in their decision.
Publishers were required to recall and edit dictionaries so as to redefine "fat" and related terms, to accommodate the new, legally-enforced mindset. Schools were required to include instruction highlighting the positive contributions of plus-size Americans. "Orson Wells Day" became a school holiday.
Nor were churches left unaffected. Government standards were created for pew-to-pew and row ratios, so that any congregant could fit comfortably in the seat of his or her choice. Any sermon touching on subjects such as self-control or moderation could be sent in for legal review, to be sure they weren't perceived to contain hate-speech against alternative bodystyles.
All this came to pass because one man asked, "What gives them the right to call me 'fat'?"
After a year under the new state of legislation, that man was enjoying a government-run buffet with a friend. His friend lamented that he wasn't having as much luck with girls as his formerly-"fat" friend.
The large man shrugged as he reached for his seventh dessert. "Maybe it's because you're bald."
"'Bald'?" the man frowned, putting down his fork.