Body positive activists rushed to defend a plus-size pop star from being publicly shamed because she wore a “thong dress” to a “family friendly” event.”
Videos of Lizzo twerking during a performance at Sunday’s Lakers-Timberwolves game sparked backlash from social media commenters who felt the rapper and LGBT icon’s outfit was inappropriate.
Keywords guys: FAMILY FRIENDLY EVENT. Come on now. Imagine how uncomfortable parents were seeing bare hindparts shaking on a screen at their local basketball game with their kids lol. Like no.
— tay. (@tayyboog) December 9, 2019
“Lizzo’s size has nothing to do with how inappropriate her outfit was. It could be someone as skinny as a stick and I would still say it was inappropriate for a family friendly event,” said one commenter, who insisted her criticism had nothing to do with Lizzo’s size.
Many Twitter users, some of whom admitted to being on the heavy side themselves, echoed the sentiment.
Some compared her “thong dress” to the attire normally worn by Rikishi, a 400-pound male WWE wrestler.
So Lizzo showed up to the Lakers game dressed like rakishi ?? For what reason pic.twitter.com/3wEpyuaezj
— NO (@FuckNitty) December 9, 2019
“iight bruh I’ve had enough,” tweeted California rapper Reason, in response to a video of Lizzo walking around the Staples Center in her dress.
Reason responded to critics accusing him of “fatphobia” and “bodyshaming” by saying he just wanted Lizzo “to put some clothes on at a game lol.”
Like that’s not body shaming, you just doing too much
— REASON TDE (@reasonTDE) December 9, 2019
But Lizzo’s defenders insisted Reason, and others who took issue with the singer’s outfit, were motivated by bigotry.
Indeed, for many of the wokest denizens of Twitter, Lizzo’s thong became a rallying point for “full-figured” women oppressed by prejudicial systems of power.
“Who knew a single thong could threaten to dismantle so many power structures,” tweeted Ayesha Faines, founder of Women Love Power, a company that offers courses aimed at helping women “unlock” their feminine power “in the boardroom, bedroom and beyond.”
In a piece for Jezebel, senior writer Maria Sherman said Lizzo’s dress was “a cool, good, fun look.”
“She should be able to trot around with her butt out at a family-friendly event; Americans could stand to be less prudish,” Sherman declared.
Poppy Noor, a journalist for The Guardian, took body-positive advocacy one step further, explaining why Lizzo’s “thong dress should command respect.”
“While the language of the outrage focuses on moral decency, the Rikishi jokes, the photos circulating comparing Lizzo to Jabba the Hutt, the countless memes of grimacing children and the ‘just why’ commentary all seem to be another question: does she not realize how fat she is?” Noor wrote in a piece published in The Guardian on Monday.
Lizzo, according to Noor, “does realize; she just doesn’t see being fat as an insult.”
Noor argued that other artists, such as Rihanna, are regularly celebrated for provocative sartorial choices.
“If RiRi pushes fashion to its limits, after all, it’s a statement to be celebrated. But when Lizzo dares to push the envelope, the discourse takes a whole different slant infused with fat-shaming,” Noor wrote.