Clearly I'm naive. I had no idea that it is legal in most places in the U.S. to discriminate against people because of their size or weight.
One reader kindly sent me the text of Wisconsin's discrimination law, as an example:
Prohibited bases of discrimination. Subject to ss. 111.33 to 111.36, no employer, labor organization, employment agency, licensing agency or other person may engage in any act of employment discrimination as specified in s. 111.322 against any individual on the basis of age, race, creed, color, disability, marital status, sex, national origin, ancestry, arrest record, conviction record, membership in the national guard, state defense force or any reserve component of the military forces of the United States or this state or use or nonuse of lawful products off the employer's premises during nonworking hours.
Nothing in there about size or weight, which makes it one of those little discriminatory loopholes we'd love to close up.
As a child of the 1960s, my first impulse is to stage a sit-in. Luckily, there are already folks working on this in much more sophisticated ways. Paul over at Big Fat Blog reminds me about COFRA's Fat Fifty project, which will aim, once it's up and running, to put every state's discrimination statutes, fat-related court cases, and other info on record as a first step toward changing them.
What a great project. And it means I don't have to reinvent the wheel or picket the Wisconson state capitol. Yet.
Y'all get involved now.