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Sneaker companies and their pathetic defenses

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In response to my post below, a reader sent me an email exchange she had with Skechers, who not only has a "Shape Up" line of get-your-back-out-alignment-for-mythical-toning-benefits shoes, but also has a line for girls, so they can get an early start on fucking up their backs and knees in the name of achieving a literally impossible physical ideal. The reader specifically pointed out that there's no "Shape Ups" for boys, and this is the reply she got:

The whole message behind Shape-ups is to get people moving, exercising, and getting fit. Skechers' advertising for Shape-ups for Girls contains the same message as the First Lady's Let's Move initiative, which is aimed specifically at children. American children are more sedentary now than at any time in our history. Shape-ups are intended to get people moving and being fit. We think that is a good thing for adults and kids — and hope others understand the intent.

The reason we do not have a Shape-Ups line at this time for boys is simply a matter of how our company's research and development works for Shape-ups. The Shape-ups line was first created for women and, once it became clear they were popular and there was a demand, the line for men was developed and marketed. The same is true for the kids' lines. Shape-Ups for Girls were rolled out first. The success of this line and the need in the market will guide us in deciding if we will create a line for boys. Other lines may start with Men's.

Regardless of what you may think of Michelle Obama's Let's Move campaign, I think it's safe to say that the First Lady is not endorsing snake oil products that promise physical effects they can't deliver. On the contrary, a quick perusal of the website will show that it sticks to scientifically sound ideas about nutrition and exercise, with an emphasis on safety. In fact, the reason that children became the focus of the campaign is that there's overwhelming scientific evidence that people who are already-fat don't get thin, so the idea behind the campaign was to prevent the weight gain in the first place.  Again, I'm not saying that you have to agree with that goal—though I do think it's going to be a side effect of improved nutrition and exercise in children—but it's just a fact that this is the goal.  This has nothing to do with snake oil sneakers promising to give you a supermodel's butt just by running your errands.

It's worth noting that Obama has received a lot of attention—and a lot of it has been nasty as hell—for not fitting the fashion model version of beauty, but instead being a strong, fit woman who has visible muscles. 

I will add that presenting little girls with unachievable ideals of beauty is contrary to real-world fitness goals. It encourages eating disorders in some, but also causes others to despair. A person who is in despair because they'll never be perfect isn't someone who is motivated to go to the gym to be well. 

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Accused child molester Roy Moore set to re-launch Senate campaign against Democrat: Report

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Accused child molester and twice-removed State Supreme Court Chief Justice Roy Moore is set to re-launch his campaign for a U.S. Senate seat, currently held by Democrat Doug Jones. Moore lost to Jones in a special election to fill the Alabama seat held for decades by now-fired Attorney General Jeff Sessions.

Moore, a right wing religious extremist, was publicly asked to not run again by President Donald Trump, and mocked by Jones over the past month as rumors grew of his interest in trying to win the seat again.

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The mind-blowing connection between a former Pence security advisor and an admitted Russian agent

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MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow has had much to say this week about Republicans and the vetting process. And having chastised the GOP over domestic violence allegations involving former Acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan, Maddow turned her attention to Vice President Mike Pence and another “vetting disaster” on Wednesday night — taking him to task for failing to vet his former national security advisor, Andrea L. Thompson (now serving as undersecretary of state for arms control and international security affairs).

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Trump ridiculed for babbling Oval Office talk about ‘manned drones’: We call those ‘planes’

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During a press availability in the Oval Office with Canadian Prime Minister, Donald Trump was naturally asked about Iran reportedly shooting down a U.S. drone in international airspace, which led to the president rambling in the way he does about what a drone is and does.

His explanation was not what one might call knowledgeable or smooth.

“I think probably Iran made a mistake,” the president replied when asked about the international incident. “I would imagine it was a general or somebody that made a mistake in shooting that drone down. Fortunately, that drone was unarmed. There was no man in it and there was no — it was just — it was over international waters, clearly over international waters, but we didn’t have a man or woman in the drone. We had nobody in the drone. It would have made a big difference, let me tell you. It would have made a big, big difference."

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