Short People & Size Acceptance

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Randy Newman brought the plight of short people to attention with his great song.

Short People got no reason
Short People got no reason
Short People got no reason
To live

They got little hands
Little eyes
They walk around
Tellin’ great big lies
They got little noses
And tiny little teeth
They wear platform shoes
On their nasty little feet

Well, I don’t want no Short People
Don’t want no Short People
Don’t want no Short People
`Round here

Short People are just the same
As you and I
(A Fool Such As I)
All men are brothers
Until the day they die
(It’s A Wonderful World)

Short People got nobody
Short People got nobody
Short People got nobody
To love

They got little baby legs
That stand so low
You got to pick ’em up
Just to say hello
They got little cars
That go beep, beep, beep
They got little voices
Goin’ peep, peep, peep
They got grubby little fingers
And dirty little minds
They’re gonna get you every time
Well, I don’t want no Short People
Don’t want no Short People
Don’t want no Short People
‘Round here

You could easily substitute ‘fat’ for ‘short’ in the lyrics.  But don’t think the struggle of short people for acceptance is just found in the lyrics of this song.  Ellen Frankel, co-author (with her sister) of the fabulous Diet Survivor’s Handbook, has authored another book Beyond Measure: A Memoir about Short Stature and Inner Growth, due out September 15. The title clearly foretells the focus of the book.  It’s one that anyone who struggles with weight can relate to.  That’s why a new study from Princeton published by the National Bureau of Economic Research raised hackles in those working for size acceptance.  Although many of us know the weight story intimately, we can see size prejudice rear its ugly head even when it’s not about weight.  The study headline:  Taller people are smarter, too.

Just in case you’re wondering, this conclusion is flawed (obviously).


6 responses to “Short People & Size Acceptance”

  1. Amy says:

    I actually read the Princeton study and I was infuriated by the irresponsible manner in which it was presented. I myself am only 4’10” and find it galling that mainstream media and the bloggers were having a field day with this.

    Please read my comments and a link to the full paper here: http://somesmallsense.blogspot.com/2006/08/princeton-study-coorelates-height-and.html (yes, I know ‘correlates’ is off, but I haven’t bothered fixing the link yet!) The correlation isn’t so much wrong as peripheral. The authors point out that better nutrition leads to better neurological and physical development. They were probably fighting for a nifty (and unfair) soundbite with their statement. The only link between height and intelligence is nutrition.

    It is worth pointing out that the study sample was VERY limited – it was only for whites in the UK and the US.

  2. Marsha says:

    Thanks for your comments, Amy. I can only second your thoughts. It was totally irresponsible the way it was presented.

  3. Ingrid says:

    Amy,

    Great topic. I am “short” 5 2″ and I hate hearing that song although it has a snappy tune…..it’s just that when people sing it to me looking down at me over a counter…it’s rough…

    I also happen to be a genious, so at least that helps my ego feel compensated for my vertical challenges. Boy, if those Princeton guys had met me! Perhaps they wouldn’t have seen me right away, but at least when I shouted up some of my genious to their far away ears, they would have been impressed.

    Anyway, I just wanted to say, thanks for the article – I really look up to people who notice we are here and speak up for us!

    Ingrid

  4. Marsha says:

    Ingrid,

    Thanks for your comments. We’re always happy to support size acceptance, no matter what the size!

    best,
    Marsha

  5. Merle Sue Schneiders says:

    You have a very informative as well as interesting site.
    I am a female 4’6″ and understand all the height hype.
    I am in the business corporate world and in this world I am not “small”.

    We short folks are sick of the “sickoos” like Randy Newman and his unfunny sense of humor in his short people song, saga or whatever he calls it.

    My only and fondish wish for Mr. Smart Ass Newman is that he has a child WHO STOPS GROWING AT THE AGE OF PERHAPS FIVE YEARS OF AGE.
    Then, let us see what song Mr. Newman posts on his little child.

    We need nuts like him eliminated from the web site.

    Have a great day.

    My two cents worth.

    Merle

  6. Marsha says:

    I apologize, Merle! I didn’t realize the Randy Newman song was negative. I thought it was actually making fun of people who say negative things about short people. I’m sure, b/c I am 5’7″, I don’t realize a lot of things that irk people who are shorter than I. But i definitely identify with size discrimination b/c I have struggled with weight issues much of my life.

    Now I know….

    marsha

About the Author

Marsha Hudnall, MS, RDN, CD

If you’re looking for an embodiment of dedication disguised as obsession, look no further. Marsha is a registered dietitian who has spent the last four decades working to help women give up dieting rules and understand how to truly take care of themselves. Her mission in life is to help women learn to enjoy eating and living well, without worries about their weight. She encourages women to embrace their love of food, which you might call being a foodie. If so, it’s appropriate because being a foodie means you pay attention when you eat. That’s a recipe made in heaven for eating well. Marsha is the President and Co-Owner of Green Mountain at Fox Run.

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