Is stomach stapling for teens worth the risk?

What's happening in our readers' forum.
Aug. 25 2006 10:54 PM

Fat Chance

Is stomach stapling for teens worth the risk?

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I was just 16 when I had the surgery. I was 5 foot even and topped the scales at 220. I don't regret one bit of the surgery. It gave me a whole new life that I would have never known if it was not for the surgery. Yes you do have to take medication for the rest of your life and you do "dump" and it does make you very sick. But in the end it is all worth it. Many teens don't understand how much your life changes. There are only certain things you can eat. Sugars for one are not allowed. You don't eat but only a few bits of something so buffets are gone. I am one who can't have dairy products. I have to say my food freedom is gone but my freedom on life I finnaly discovered!!!

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That said, Eigenvector reacts with shock at the prospect of such a radical solution to child obesity. MSMcGahhey also thinks it too extreme.

Chime in over at the Medical Examiner. AC 7:48pm

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Wednesday, August 23, 2006

John Kinkaid's article, "Little Miss Sunshine," has stirred up a heated debate in the Culturebox Fray. Does the media storm surrounding the murder of JonBenet Ramsey reveal something sinister about American culture, and about us as media consumers?

Many readers reject the central premise of Kincaid's argument—that "we" have any interest in the Ramsey murder at all. Valiantly overcoming their disinterest in the case long enough to read the article, formulate a response, and post it on the Fray, such readers profess helplessness in the face of saturation Ramsey coverage. SeanD has a more empathetic take:

What a strange position Kincaid took, accusing us all of vicarious pedophilia! It seems he's fallen into a trap very familiar to those of us who work with criminal offenders: If you spend all day around people who have done terrible things, you start to think that the world is a terrible place full of terrible people.

It sounds like Mr. Kincaid needs to get out of the office more and chat with a few of us NON-pedophiles. You know, the overwhelming majority of the population, who feel absolutely nothing sexual for Jonbenet or any other inappropriately-dressed child, and can't comprehend why anyone would. [... Otherwise], he'll simply end up writing more articles like this one, which undermine themselves by taking on the very sensational and breathless tone that he claims to be condemning.

CaLawyer doesn't deny an interest in the case but resents the charge that it's an "obsession."

Like many people, I have an interest in this unsolved crime, and like most people, I am no more "obsessed" with this story than I am "obsessed" with other news stories. Methinks writers like Kincaid doth protest too much when he paints a picture of us who are interested in this case as weirdoes who are "obsessed" with the murder of a six-year-old beauty queen. These finger-pointers tip their hand when they use words like "titillating" to describe this horrific case. Like most people, I find nothing titillating about the death of a six year old girl. Maybe Kincaid and his ilk do, and they are projecting their own prurient reasons for their fascination with this case onto us.

As a law student himself, Freditor_G appreciates the lawyerly touch of CaLawyer's factor test explaining the story's appeal.

Not all readers are so quick to refuse responsibility for the eroticization of children. adept42 surmises that a secret longing for children is far more widespread than we may wish to believe:

Think back to your own adolescence. I'll bet that most of you will be able to remember developing an erotic interest in the opposite sex years before you were ready or able to act on that impulse. I don't think anyone would consider it strange or unhealthy for a child to be attracted to someone their own age.

Of course you've moved on but youthful desires never completely die. [...] Pedophilia isn't some kind of ultimate evil -its ultimate childishness. Its adults trying to make themselves happy with the same dreams they've had since they were kids. Its sad and pathetic more than anything else. Now of course a pedophile's crimes are awful and they deserve to be punished. But demonizing them and claiming we have absolutely never felt anything anywhere close to what they feel is a dangerous lie.

theotherme goes even further, arguing that sexual gratification is a unitary urge: