HBTE Part 7

The Health and Diet Administration had adopted three standards for what they considered fatness. These mirrored the previous BMI categories. People whose BMI’s fell between 30 and 35 were subject to frequent visits by HDA personnel and warnings about their weight. They were told to lose weight, but as long as they didn’t gain, they faced “only” repeated visits and warnings.

People whose BMI’s were between 35 and 40 faced frequent visits and warnings and the ultimatum that if they didn’t get their weights down to the below-35 BMI category, they would be sent to a Re-Education Center. (The FAP Director was in this category.)

People whose BMI came in at above 40 were sent to a Re-Education Center automatically.

FAP now worked to keep as many people as they could out of the Re-Education Centers. At first, in the early days of the Health and Diet Laws, they had protested -through marches, letters, emails, phone calls and then through chaining themselves to the HDA Buildings. They had hoped to garner support through the chainings, she remembered, but by that time so many people had been brainwashed by the constant HDA stream of propaganda (“FAT PEOPLE ARE A DANGER TO SOCIETY”) that the ones who viewed those who’d chained themselves to the HDA Buildings found it funny and jeered instead (“At least you’ll lose weight, fat pants”). One horrific incident had involved a group of teenage boys stripping one of the FAP members chained to one of the buildings. After that, chainings were considered too dangerous and FAP went underground.

With their emphasis and redefined mission, the agents now worked to alert FAP and their friends and sympathizers about imminent “assignments” to Re-Ed Centers. The sad and ironic thing, the Director thought, was that some of their agents who had lost a few pounds on the orders of HDA personnel were now regaining them and were also too weak to function anymore in the field. These members faced the greatest danger; regainers were subject to lifetime “assignments” to Re-Ed Centers.

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About franniez

Author of FatLand: A Novel and editor/author of Fat Poets Speak: Voices of the Fat Poets' Society, along with Kathy Barron, Anne Caplan, Corinna Makris and Lesleigh Owen.
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