What is there to say about MeMe Roth that isn’t obvious to the point of boredom? A new Guardian profile calls her “the woman who hates food,” and I think that’s about right, if you add “fat people, women, and herself” to the end of the phrase. (Check out that article for the “I don’t have an eating disorder even though I obsessively exercise and don’t eat” anecdote at the end, but be warned that there’s some obesity panic in the article itself.) But just when you thought Roth couldn’t get any more a) offensive, and b) wrong, she goes and says this:
“The defence has been made in the case of sex criminals that there is pleasure on the part of the victim. The same is true with what we’re doing with food. We may abuse our bodies with food, but it’s incredibly pleasurable. From a food marketer’s point of view, when your quote unquote victim is so willing and enjoying of the process, who’s fighting back?”
Clearly, MeMe Roth is a one woman army of failure. Everything is wrong with this statement, on both a factual and rhetorical level. Let’s make a list.
- Classic straw man: “The defence has been made.” Oh yeah? By whom? Nice passive voice.
- More passive voice to defend rape as not-rape: “there is pleasure on the part of the victim.” Roth is saying that people like being raped. Only she’s too chickenshit, or possibly too stupid, to say it that way. And of course, the rapist is disappeared from this sentence.
- Also note that she is claiming that we should use, as the logic behind deciding the single most crucial thing we do every day of our lives—i.e., eating food—the kind of logic that would let rapists stay out of jail.
- Ill-defined terms: “We may abuse our bodies with food, but it’s incredibly pleasurable.” If it’s incredibly pleasurable, MeMeMeMe, that means it’s not abuse.
- Victim blaming: “quote unquote victim.”
- Again with the victim blaming and the complete fucking misunderstanding of what sexual assault is. Hint to MeMe: if someone “is so willing and enjoying of the process,” that person is not being raped. That person is having sex.
So in using rape as her metaphor for what happens when you eat an Oreo, MeMe Roth demonstrates yet again that she literally has no idea what she’s talking about. If we stick with her horribly ineffective metaphor, what she is suggesting is that when you are having an “incredibly pleasurable” time having consensual sex with someone, MeMe should break in and yell “Rape” to save you from your quote unquote victimhood. MeMe Roth wants us all to live the plot of Atonement.
Note to journalists or anyone else who would ever consider consulting Roth as an “expert”: this woman believes people like being raped, just like you like to eat a cookie. She is the wrongest person who ever wronged. Please, do us all a favor and just leave the woman to her self-loathing.