FanDuel - WFBC

May 10, 2012

CBS Golf Writer Mocks Overweight Players Championship Fan: While covering the first round of the Players Championship Thursday at TPC Sawgrass in Ponte Vedra Beach, Fl., CBS Sports golf columnist Steve Elling calls a fan following Tiger Woods around "300 pounds of cottage cheese stuffed into a 200-pound sack" and posts seven more insulting comments about her on Twitter. Is this acceptable?

posted by rcade to golf at 06:09 PM - 22 comments

No it is not remotely acceptable. I long for the day fat hatred is treated with the same disgust as all other forms of hatred. It's shameful that society sees it as acceptable.

Increasing evidence shows that despite what these scumbags say about eating etc... More and more it's seeming genetics play a much larger part in whether you are overweight or not.

I hope that piece of shit gets what's coming to them.

posted by Drood at 05:24 PM on May 10

The "to put it politely" at the beginning of that description gets me. I think Elling's boss should call him into the office and say, "To put it politely, you're fucking fired, you shithead."

posted by Hugh Janus at 05:29 PM on May 10

The "to put it politely" at the beginning of that description gets me

"No offense intended, but . . . " The mark of a professional asshole.

posted by yerfatma at 05:51 PM on May 10

"No offense intended" = "This is probably going to offend you, but I don't really give a flying shit, so I'm going to say it anyway"

and

"To put it politely" should normally predede something actually put politely, as opposed to as crassly as possible..

posted by tahoemoj at 05:53 PM on May 10

It gets even worse on Twitter. Elling thinks fat people are hilarious.

I told him this on Twitter: "Using your platform at CBS to mock fatties is awesome, @EllingYelling. Now tell some of your best jokes about Jews and blacks."

posted by rcade at 06:11 PM on May 10

Must be great to be one of the beautiful people like Elling.

Dick.

posted by dyams at 08:15 PM on May 10

"Acceptable", no, not in my house. It will be interesting to see whether CBS considers it acceptable.

posted by lil_brown_bat at 09:45 PM on May 10

Now tell some of your best jokes about Jews and blacks."

You really think he will get the point you are making? He seems pretty crass to me.

Fat people are the last of what you can discriminate against, ridicule, make fun of, and down right hate in this country. It isn't right but what can you do? Pass a law seems a bit drastic, not to mention probably unenforceable.

A friend pointed out to me this phrase in a personal ad "....i'm sorry but if you don't think enough of yourself to stay in shape.........i don't want to be with you" Some people let themselves go this is true. Sounds like a real nice guy. But some have a legitimate reason for their being large.

I am a "rubenesque" type build, not because I am lazy, but arthritis, prednisone, and COPD make it rough to work out, but I do what I can. I see it as someone who redicules fat people are lacking something in themselves.

posted by steelergirl at 12:19 AM on May 11

As a former fat guy, to put it politely, he can go fuck a cactus.

posted by WeedyMcSmokey at 12:19 AM on May 11

For the record, I was very sick two years ago. I weighed 300 pounds. At 6'8" while I didn't look thin, I was not what anyone would call fat.

I lost 140 pounds in four months. I got as low as 160 and looked worse than my father-in-law did the day he lost his fight with cancer.

My surgeon, his assistant, my GP, and several other medical experts told me that had I not been "fat", I would be dead now. The organ failure ravaged my body. The massive infections ravaged my body. The antibiotics did as much if not more damage.

I asked for clarification and was told in no uncertain terms that being "overweight" saved my life.

I'm not one to wish ill on people, but assholes like this make me wish you there was a service that delivered Ebola to the truly deserving.

I said the rest of my piece in the comment that was moved into here at the top.

Fuck this asshole.

posted by Drood at 04:04 AM on May 11

It will be interesting to see whether CBS considers it acceptable

With May sweeps, I can't see the network doing anything unless advertisers get on them. I hope I'm wrong and CBS comes down hard on Elling because of his asshole comment.

posted by roberts at 07:00 AM on May 11

Michael Savage stunt double.

Drop him in the hazard at 17 to confirm that it's gator-free.

posted by beaverboard at 08:33 AM on May 11

I've updated my blog post with a quote from the National Association to Advance Fat Acceptance.

You really think he will get the point you are making? He seems pretty crass to me.

Given his responses on Twitter, I don't think the point would get through to him unless he paid a price for it. Evidently somebody at CBS didn't like the "cottage cheese" insult, because the line has disappeared from the column. The Twitter insults remain.

On Twitter today Elling's criticizing Augusta National's sexism, so he's not blind to social issues. I think he degrades his reputation (and that of CBS) by unloading dig after dig at somebody for being fat. He wasn't even calling the woman was being rude or unpleasant. Just loud and silly.

Elling turns up in the intro to Fitness for Dummies with this praise: "When it comes to fitness, like most male American slugs, I'm actually more of a complete blathering moronic idiot. This book will come in handy for those of us who don't know a fat gram from Phil Gramm or a donut from a bagel. Now all I need to know is how to look cool and studly in the gym while sweating profusely."

He sounds like one of the people who loses weight and then decides everybody else could do it if they were just as virtuous.

posted by rcade at 09:46 AM on May 11

Fat people are the last of what you can discriminate against, ridicule, make fun of, and down right hate in this country.

As a bald guy, I would add to that list, but that's beside the point.

It's sad. It sounds like this woman's actions were fairly boorish, which is pretty fertile territory for a clever writer to mock her for her behavior. The fact that he felt he had to take the lazy way and attack her for her appearance just smacks of intellectual laziness.

posted by tahoemoj at 10:01 AM on May 11

I'm offended by the inferior quality of his humour, but I'm not offended on behalf of fat people everywhere. In fact, at the risk of losing friends: fat jokes = black jokes = Jew jokes? Hardly.

posted by JJ at 10:36 AM on May 11

who don't know a fat gram from Phil Gramm

Zing!

posted by yerfatma at 10:41 AM on May 11

In fact, at the risk of losing friends: fat jokes = black jokes = Jew jokes? Hardly.

All three are examples of cheap discriminatory humor. I'll grant that they're not the same, but why is it acceptable for a CBS golf columnist to use his platform to unload dig after dig about a fat fan when even a single joke about race or ethnicity would be a firing offense? Fuzzy Zoeller became a national scandal for one fried chicken joke after Tiger Woods won the 1997 Masters.

The column as it reads now, where she's described only as "distinctly rotund" and "large," is not so egregious.

But singling out a fan for abuse the way he did -- especially on Twitter -- is over the line. Did he consider that the fan might be back for days 2 through 4? Is it cool for this pro journalist to make a fan at an event he covers unwelcome and expose her to ridicule for being fat?

Keep in mind that this is a sport where fans can be expelled for insulting a golfer's pants or asking a golfer a pointed question.

posted by rcade at 11:07 AM on May 11

I'm offended by the inferior quality of his humour

Agreed, as noted in the post above yours. Is it wrong to expect more than "hey, you're fat" from someone who makes his living writing because he supposedly has a talent for observation and description? With rapier-like wit like that setting the pace, it's inevitable that this country will continue to dummify itself.

posted by tahoemoj at 11:37 AM on May 11

I guess I'm the only one who wished the article had pictures.

posted by phaedon at 01:24 PM on May 11

hmmm, self-link, eh? ;)

posted by scully at 02:18 PM on May 11

he can go fuck a cactus

I tried that, Weedy, and now I'm stuck on her.

Being fat can be the result of many things. Genetics and reaction to medications are a couple of them. Bad diet and lack of exercise are the most common, but even these might be the result of circumstance rather than bad behavior. Think of those who cannot afford a special diet or who are pressed for time and have to use convenience foods. I do not frequent fast food places, but on those occasions that I do, I rarely see anyone whom I would characterize as obese. I myself am not exactly slim nor am I obese - probably about 20 pounds above where I should be, but I consider it a return on a 71-year investment in good food and beer.

posted by Howard_T at 02:22 PM on May 11

That stuff I said about how fans at the Player's are well-behaved? Maybe not.

posted by rcade at 10:28 PM on May 13

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