British Professional Rugby Player Accused of ‘Fat Shaming’ a Walrus

Freddie Burns, a British professional rugby player, was accused of “fat shaming” a walrus after posting a viral video to social media Monday of the captive animal doing “sit-ups.”

“Just under 2 weeks till the start of pre season #nobodypanic,” tweeted the English Rugby Union player, who stars for Bath and the English national team, in a caption accompanying the clip.

The joke didn’t go over well with at least one commenter on social media, who took Burns to task for making light of “animal cruelty.” Some advocacy groups decry the methods used to train captive animals.

“Firstly I’m sure you are no where near walrus proportions and secondly using a video of a captive animal that is being made to complete unnatural actions is a bit shit,” the commenter wrote. “Despite how much your own ‘fat’ shaming might be funny, animal cruelty isn’t!”

The user’s remark was subjected to the infamous “ratio.” Although nine other humans “liked” Burns’ post in an apparent indication of their agreement, most of the 50 replies were critical.

“Can’t believe I just read that tweet,” read a comment from Burns’ brother Billy, who also plays professional rugby.

Others accused the animal rights advocate of being a “snowflake.”

Someone said: “2019 summed up in a tweet.”

Freddie Burns and political correctness in 2019

Many critics have lately complained of an increase in cultural oversensitivity and policing of language. They argue that progressives’ apparent quest to scrub all vestiges of un-woke ideology or “offensive” language from the culture has made comedy a minefield, especially on platforms like Twitter, where the threat of getting “cancelled” is always imminent.

Cover image: Freddie Burns shared a video to Twitter of a walrus doing sit-ups (WikiMedia Commons, Screen grab)

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