#Ashamed Twitter Party and Petition For Children in Georgia

Mom blogging and health-based  communities all over the internet are uniting this Friday, January 27th from 9-10pm EST to petition the @Strong_4_Life Campaign and the State of Georgia to cease this campaign before it does any more damage to children. The Strong4Life Campaign has purchased billboard ads all over the State of Georgia in hopes to promote a “wake-up call” to Georgian parents about how many children are obese. Unfortunately, they decided to create ads that are so controversial, they are down right offensive and hurtful to children. We think they have gone too far. As a concerned group of moms we recognize that Georgia has a large scale problem with obesity. No one is refuting that. We are refuting however tactics that would inadvertently harm children in the process.

Overweight children in Georgia have been made to feel #Ashamed with these billboards. And furthermore, children of a normal weight are being exposed to very negative representations of overweight children. These negative representations of overweight children are only succeeding in ostracizing them even more, and leaving them open to more attacks. The children these billboards are hoping to help, they are actually harming. Overweight children will be made to feel even more #Ashamed. As mothers and concerned citizens, we are speaking out about this. This is just wrong.

We believe it’s wrong to fight obesity by fighting obese people…especially children. Children are defenseless and cannot fight back on their own. Obese people are not the problem, obesity IS. Campaigns that have a focus on hope, support, and education are far more beneficial to children. Most overweight children already suffer from self esteem issues, which are going to be considerably exasperated by these ads.

Event: Friday, January 27th from 9-10pm EST

Hashtag: #Ashamed

Purpose: To protest the Strong4Life Ads in the State of Georgia and chat about obesity and ways to solve problem

Here are some of the main mom blogging communities that have come out against these ads and will be at the chat:

1. Mamavation with Leah Segedie @Bookieboo

2. Resourceful Mommy Media with Amy Lupold Bair @Resourcefulmom

3. Type A Mom with Kelby Carr @Typeamom

4. 5 Minutes for Mom Community with Janice Croze @5minutesformom

5. Anissa Mayhew with Slightly Bent Productions @AnissaMayhew

6. Christine Young with Dates for Diapers @youngmommy

7. Cecily Kellogg with UpperCase Woman @Cecilyk

8. DietsnReview @Dietsinreview

9. Sue O Lear as @Mrsfatass

10. Amy Bellgardt with Mom Spark Media @Momspark

11. Stacie Haight Connerty with Divine Miss Mommy @Stacieinatlanta

12. Lisa Morris Frame with A Daily Pinch @Daily_Pinch

13. Social Media Moms with Kadi Prescott @kadiprescott

14. Bloggy Moms with Tiffany Noth @bloggymoms

15. InspiredRD with Alysa Bajenaru, RD @InspiredRD

16. DrMommyOnline with Dr. Daisy Sutherland @DrMommy

17. Sugar in the Raw with Sugar Jones @SugarJones

18. Queen of Spain with Erin Kotecki Vest @QueenofSpain

19. Fitfluential with Kelly Olexa @KellyOlexa

20. Jessica Northley @JessicaNorthley

21. Loralee with Looneytunes @Looneytunes

22. Green & Clean Mom with Sommer Poquette @Greenmom

23. Runhers @Runhers Community

24. EXPERT: Dr. Jen @Playthisway

25. Fitbottomedgirls community @Fitbottomedgirl

26. Jenny on the Spot with Jenny Ingram @Jennyonthespot

27. Greeblemonkey with Aimee Giese @Greeblemonkey

28. Fun and Fit.org with Alexandra Williams @Alexandrafunfit

29. Skimbaco Lifestyle with Katja Presnal @Katjapresnal

30. Pure Natural Diva with Tania @Purenaturaldiva

31. MommyPR with Angela @MommyPR

32. EXPERT: Heather Bauer, RD as @heatherbauer_rd

33. PHD in Parenting with Annie @PhdinParenting

34. Redneck Mommy with Tanis Miller @Redneckmommy

35. Kelly’s Lucky You with Kelly @girlslunchout

(More to come…)

 
GIVEAWAYS (Winners will be selected at random during party):
– FIVE (5) winners will each receive a $50 Visa Gift Card.
– ONE (1) winner will receive a $50 AmEx Gift Card.
– ONE (1) winner will receive a Full Conference Pass to the Type-A Parent Conference in Charlotte, North Carolina plus the book Mom Blog SEO
– THREE (3) winners will each receive My Trainer Fitness for At Work

Join us by tweeting this message:

TONITE moms R joining together in opposition 2 @Strong_4_Life & their irresponsible ads towards kids, http://bit.ly/zA5FCk #Ashamed

OR

Shaming the “Fat” kid is NOT the way to solve the Obesity Epidemic, bit.ly/zFKYOM #Ashamed

OR

TONIGHT: Stop the Shaming of Overweight Children in Georgia. Join us at 9pm EST to chat about #Ashamed, http://bit.ly/zASFCk

O

If you would like to join us in opposing these ads and asking the Strong 4 Life Campaign to cease harming children with them, sign the linky below with your twitter name OR blog.

Leah Segedie is the Founder of Mamavation and Bookieboo, a blogger network. After losing over 100 lbs, she started a career mentoring women in health and since then has assisted in over 3,500 lbs lost via the Mamavation community. Leah and her work has been mentioned in Ladies Home Journal, Reader's Digest, Fitness, Women's Day, CNN, ABC, CBS, the O'Reilly Factor, AOL, Entrepreneur, and Yahoo to name a few. She works from home in her fuzzy slippers.
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Comments

  1. Wild Horses can’t keep me away :) cuz… you know, I have an opinion or two about this.

  2. Thank you for doing this and bringing everyone together!

  3. Definitely going to attend .Thank you for organizing this!! :))

  4. It makes my heart hurt so much! War is waged against our kids in so many ways.

  5. I added our twitter handle to the link list, but unfortunately messed up the first one. Can you please delete it?

    Sorry about that.

    Thank you for setting this up and we’re looking forward to helping out during the Twitter event.

  6. I will absolutely be there!

  7. That is the most backwards thing I’ve seen in a long time. Wow. I’ll definitely do what I can to lend my support. Wowzers.

  8. I hope I am home from work in time. this is despicable

  9. Mary C. (@swtthing3) says:

    Hopefully there can be a petition started against Strong4Life Campaign’s Negative Ads. Thanks for putting this together.

  10. Kids are kids for just so long. This is cruel. This is humiliating. This is not what I would ever tell a child. Talk about writing on the slate of who they are. I am with you all! Stop hating.

  11. I don’t know how to party twitter style, but I am 100% against this campaign, so tell me what to do!

  12. I will be attending Leah, and also posted about the ad and the Twitter Party on my site. http://www.thatshakerofsalt.com/2012/01/public-outrage-strong4life-campaign.html

  13. I was an overweight little girl who was taunted and teased until I lost the weight in seventh grade. These types of ads are unacceptable and SHAME should never be used to motivate a child to lose weight. Education and compassion are the way to HELP them. SHAME on the State of Georgia!

  14. Marie Nichols says:

    I’ll be there.

  15. I read about it on @mmc67’s blog: http://www.thatshakerofsalt.com/2012/01/public-outrage-strong4life-campaign.html

    Either I missed it on other blogs or didn’t pay enough attention.

    I am very concerned. I’m afraid this type of ad campaign is in itself bullying, and will lead to an increase of bullying in schools. It’s a chain reaction, because I think it will also lead to more children with increased problems with their self-images, eating disorders and even suicide. I’m serious here, I don’t think I’m overreacting at all, and I am very happy to see so many people speak out against this.

  16. When I was in elementary school, I put on the pudge. There was a school program that my mom agreed to put me in. It was kind of a lunch group for chubby kids, but I didn’t really know that at first. It just seemed like a group of kids that got to hang out and have fun together. The way it worked was a few kids got together with the school nurse right before lunch to choose lunch items together and then had some fun activities at recess. In a non-offensive, positive way, the school nurse taught us to make better food choices and to have fun staying active. I looked forward to it every day!

    When two of my four kids hit those pudgy years, I knew what I needed to do. I prodded them to be as active as possible, trying to make it fun by taking bike rides on the beach or rewarding them with video game minutes equal to work out minutes. Shaming them would just backfire. Teaching them to make healthy choices is a much better way to go. The other night, I called my oldest daughter who takes after me, physically. She was on her way to a yoga class. Apparently, the lessons took.

    What about the other two? They are naturally thin, but I’ve impressed upon them that they also need to make healthy choices. I’ve also made it clear that not everyone has the same body and no one deserves to be teased about their bodies.

    I’ve struggled with my weight most of my life. My body type is one that requires regular exercise to maintain a healthy weight. When life gets busy, I have a hard time maintaining a regular workout schedule. Eventually, I carve time out and get back in the swing of exercising. If someone were to come to me and tell me that I was getting fatter, I would probably crawl further into my hole. Making people feel bad about something that they struggle never works… not matter how old they get.

  17. I can’t wait. I’ve been boiling over about this since I heard. Denial that this campaign sucks has got to stop!
    See you all there.

  18. Thank you for putting this together. I’ll be there to help speak out against this horriffic attack on innocent children.

  19. I would love to participate in this chat. It is so wrong what they are doing in Georgia, this is just an awful campaign that is going to wreak havoc on childrens self esteem which is already in question for a lot of overweight children. There has to be a better way….

  20. This upsets me on so many levels, wouldn’t miss this chat for anything.

  21. Diane Brogan says:

    So happy this misjustice is being addressed.

  22. How could that little girl’s parents give permission for that campaign to begin with??? HORRIFYING! I’ll have a post in the morning ~ thank you Leah!

  23. Can’t wait to support this cause. Obesity is the problem, not obese people!

  24. Thank you for starting this forum for our voices to be heard! I will be spreading the word to my audience. This campaign is shameful and should not have made it past the stupid idea phase.

  25. 8BitDad will be fighting alongside the moms with toothpicks and beard combs.

    http://www.8bitdad.com/2012/01/27/ashamed-twitter-party-and-petition-for-children-in-georgia/

  26. Thanks for standing up for girls everywhere and the little girl in all of us!

  27. OH YES. I have an opinion about this. Thank you for doing this! No little girl or boy should be made to feel ashamed.

  28. @dreamfishing says:

    My 9 yr old daughter struggles with weight issues and this makes me really sad ..

  29. Kids go through enough in this world now.They don’t need the added stress and that is exactly what this add of Georgia is doing. Leave the innocent children out of it, because in the end it does more damage than good.

  30. The main reason why I went back to school for my MA in counseling was to help my fitness students who would come in with issues that were beyond my scope of practice at the time. It was (and still is) sad to see how many women were trying to change based on someone else’s opinion of them. I keep hoping our culture will realize that shame is not all that motivating or helpful. Kids already have enough pressure from their peers; they don’t need it from “the state.”

  31. As a survivor of anorexia, and a spokeswoman on body image and the dangers of eating disorders, my blood has been boiling ever since I’ve laid my eyes on this campaign. It’s tough as there are many that truly believe this IS education. Be prepared to be attacked with “Ok then, what is YOUR idea to solve the obesity epidemic?!” I was bombarded last night with link after link by people who support this campaign. If you have the time, try and find some links of your own showing why this is NOT the answer…I have a sick 4yr old at home right now but will try and gather some time to search and post links here of past, similar campaigns that have failed and/or backfired.. Thank you for organizing this much needed chat!

  32. My daughter is on a special diet for seizure control opening my eyes to a whole new vkew of food & life. This is a topic that definitely needs talked about looking forward to the discussion,thank you!

  33. I have so many thoughts and feelings on this issue! Hope to jump in the chat tonite. It’s wonderful that you’re encouraging a conversation and getting people involved. That’s how change happens!

  34. Thanks for the invite! IT would be an honor.

  35. This is so nuts it isnt even funny. Whoever thought of running this campaign in this manner needs their head examined. It ticks me off.

  36. Sheila Vives says:

    I had heard a little bit about this in the news. So glad you are doing this petition against this ad campaign. The campaign is irresponsible. Obesity is not the child’s fault and certainly is not always a “food issue”. Medications, Medical Conditions, Genetics all play a role into how we are built. If someone wants to attack Obesity from the Food angle, they need to campaign to get growth hormones, MSG, Fillers and Additives removed from our food. Preservatives and Food Dyes also. The body is not made to recognize and digest what “isn’t real food”. Parents this is your wake-up too. Read the labels for the health of your family. Education is the key, not insulting or creating social labeling.

    • Michelle Washburn says:

      Very well said. I totally agree with you. My son takes medication that cause weight gain, his medication is not an option for him. My daughter was actually diagnosed at the age of 9 with a condition in which her levels of testosterone were to high. The specialist believes that all the growth hormones in our food are causing this to happen, my child who was not even a tween yet had hair growing in places where it should not have been yet. We need to get the crap out of our foods!

  37. You guys seriously rock for putting this together!

  38. Thank you to Alexandra @ AlexandraFunFit for letting me know about this. Don’t think this ad agency had any clue what they were doing in an effort to combat childhood obesity. When has shame worked for anyone as a message? As a GA resident, thrilled to see this effort. Thank you!

  39. When I first caught a glimpse of this, I thought it wasn’t real – as in a horrible joke. WOW thanks for standing up against this and giving us all a way to be heard!

  40. Seriously I am so livid about this campaign it is appauling that they did this and the parents should be put down like they allowed their child to be put down in this ads. I don’t see how shaming a child is going to help teach them better. Why not teach them the tools they need.

  41. Michelle Washburn says:

    WOW! This is heartbreaking! They should be ashamed of themselves shaming innocent children. Obesity needs to be addressed in the family as a whole, not because of an overweight child in the family. I find the ads disgraceful. We need to protect our children from things just as this. Thanks for the invite.

  42. So inspired by the power of social media to come together and shame the real people who who should be ashamed. I would NOT miss this. I think we should also share our pride in our bodies and our wellness.

    Rebecca

  43. This is one of the saddest things I have seen in a while. I mean seriously – are those real kids in those pictures?!?! I can’t imagine how it would feel to be the object of this! Besides that, isn’t this promoting eating disorders?

  44. I am proud to be a part of this group who will be there tonight

  45. Standing strong for the children around the world – we are shouting loudly throughout our community and will support this effort to stand up to bully’s in sheep’s clothing!!

  46. I’ll be there!

  47. Let’s start with all adults first. I really believe this weight is not about lack of activity. I believe the fact that our food sources are all coming from animals fed antibiotics and growth hormones and the fact that our grains are now genetically modified. This has been a fast epidemic and I believe it’s the quality of the food available–not the fact that our children are eating too much.

  48. def will be there

  49. There are much better ways to deal with the obesity issue.

  50. Heidi Helene(@DreamFog) says:

    I hope this is one party tag that gets trending!

  51. @kymnasium says:

    I can’t wait to be a part of this movement to stop putting posters up about these strong kids. so right not the kids, its obesity, we need to help each other not put down each other to make bring in positive change. and no use any child to make their point. so many other creative ways

  52. Rachel V. says:

    I was a “fat” teen that was made to feel ashamed all of the time from my family. I am so against these ads. They are horrible.

  53. This is wrong. Utterly wrong. While I completely understand where this is coming from, this is not the way. I’ll never forget the day my mom told me I got to start having salad for dinner. I still feel the shame of this – and I wasn’t heavy… Mildly poochy, thank you, Mom. I’m still not comfortable in my own skin and probably never will be. Georgia has been doing a lot wrong – I remember “fat reports” going home with kids before, too. Educate that this is a problem for lots of reasons – social included – but don’t leave it with no solutions, places to turn, or other help. Shame never solved anything.

  54. Scare tactics are never the way to go!

  55. Shaming someone is NOT the way to get them to change.

  56. These ads are just gross in their injustice to the children in them. The little girl in the one poster could have been me in the 1960s. I have struggled with my weight all of my life, and it’s not because I’m inactive — I’m not — or that I sit at home eating bon bons.

    In 7th grade I was nicked named Little Sow because another girl was Big Sow. And that’s what kids wrote in my 7th grade yearbook. I still feel the heat of shame.

    Please stop making these children who are overweight the focus of the wrong type of attention. Launching a campaign that makes elementary school girls feel that they are not little girls, that they are less than, is despicable!

    Troy Corley
    Founder
    ASAP Asperger’s Support for Adolescents Plus

  57. In the middle of the twitter party but just found the petition. Thank you for helping us speak up! @rkosully

  58. Childhood obesity is a problem, but shaming is not the answer. Kids and parents need to be educated better about healthy food choices and we need to return recess and active play to schools.

  59. Rachel S. says:

    As a mother in the State of Georgia and going down the highways and seeing these billboards I just want to thank you for taking this issue up!! I HATE those billboards and am angered at the new SHAPE act that will weigh the students in school and report their weights to the government (and the parents).

    Keep fighting the good fight!

  60. I can understand being upset about the ads, are they wrongly portrayed, maybe…In my opinion it should be the parents in the billboard ads with the children. By not taking an active role in our children’s lives, to include nutrition we as parents have helped make this issue become much larger. Stop whining about a negative ad blitz, and start thinking about the road that led up to the child becoming overweight. Don’t be scared to tell your child “no”. It is ok for a child to be upset or cry because they didn’t get something they wanted.

    “When I first saw the Strong4Life billboards, my first reaction was wanting to cry and sleep in my room and eat a box of Twinkies. It touched me that much,” she said in an email interview with HLN.

    This quote says a lot about how we are handling our problems today…if this is your first thought to an emotionally challenging topic, then is there any wonder why our children are overweight?

    Please don’t take my comments out of context or blow them up to be more than what they are. I am simply stating my opinion on this topic and not trying to degrade or demean anyone. I just feel like we have learned as a society that blaming others is much better then accepting responsibility for our own actions or inactions

  61. First let me say, the ad is terrible. It’s like constantly talking to someone who drinks a lot or does drugs and you constantly tell them they have to stop. It’s a vicious cycle. It makes them feel worse, thus causing them to do more of what is wrong. It’s NOT always the parents. If you nag your children it forces them to want to run to unhealthy stuff. Many parents to choose to bring fruits & veggies in to their home (Although not as healthy as they used to be, because scientist have played around with the DNA and filled with unhealthy chemicles)

    First they need to get RID of TV commercials with food, start encouraging with healthy foods & exercise. Stop all the FAKE made up people on TV ads. Make them real. Do they have cigarette ads anymore? They can change that if they weren’t focused on the mighty dollar and truly focused on people. They like to play on our emotions.

    They need to STOP allowing the big companies taking over the small farmers and STOP adding antibiotics & steroids to the foods ( Meats, Dairy, Eggs etc) I believe that there is only 5 or 6 companies that have control over 90% of the farmers now. Many people don’t realize that. Especially over the past 15 years. You can’t tell me that that hasn’t affected the way food is metabolized in our children and people in general. Why the increase in high BP & diabetes? Because they have taken things away from the natural state. Most people can’t afford organic, and can we truly trust organic?

    Stop with all the crap that is not healthy in boxed items. Stop playing with the DNA of fruits and Veggies. They have been doing it for so long, no wonder this generation is affected. HUmm, I wonder why Michelle O has her own private garden, because she knows that all the other fruits and veggies have been messed with and she doesn’t want her family to be affected by the crap.

    Get the vending machines out of the schools. Stop allowing the grocery stores/stores from allowing unhealthy foods by the cash registers along with unhealthy drinks. Wouldn’t it be amazing if they had healthy items close to the registers & water only? Get rid of all the crappy magazines by the cash registers and put WHOLESOME healthy ones they don’t need a half naked woman on the cover to get the point across, gear it towards kids. NO, they have the trash looking ones where the kids think they have to look & be a certain way (That effects the children too) It is that vicious cycle, to where they believe they have to be a certain way, then the addiction hormones kick in and they run to eating for comfort. Just like anyone that is addicted to anything. I wonder what would happen if they changed all that?

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