NEW YORK CITY – Critics are arguing that TIME Magazine’s credibility has been completely destroyed after it published a new article that claims that exercise is racist. The article, which is comprised of an interview with the author of an upcoming book entitled “The White Supremacist Origins of Exercise, and 6 Other Surprising Facts about the History of U.S. Physical Fitness,” is getting roundly slammed online by fitness and medical experts.
“This is totally part of a white supremacy project,” author Natalia Mehlman Petrzela claims of the concept of working out.
“How did U.S. exercise trends go from reinforcing white supremacy to celebrating Richard Simmons?” Petrzela asks, and then goes on to argue that even something as simple as going out for a quick run in the morning is rooted in White Supremacy.
“But it’s important to point out that access [to running] was never totally equal, if you lived in a neighborhood that didn’t have safe streets or streets that were not well lit. Women were catcalled. People of color were thought to be committing a crime,” she said. “The ‘running is for everybody’ discourse still quite often leaves out the fact that depending on where you live and the body that you live in, it can be a very different kind of experience.”
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Even early 20th century efforts to encourage women to exercise and get fit – which at the time would have been considered extremely enlightened – were knocked by Petrzela as a way to keep racial minorities down.
“They said we should get rid of corsets, corsets are an assault on women’s form, and that women should be lifting weights and gaining strength. At first, you feel like this is so progressive,” she said. “Then you keep reading, and they’re saying white women should start building up their strength because we need more white babies. They’re writing during an incredible amount of immigration, soon after enslaved people have been emancipated. This is totally part of a white supremacy project.”
Petrzela also maintained that a belief that people can be “fit at any size,” even if the individual was morbidly obese.
“Today, you see quite a few fat people in the fitness industry, who are operating from a better perspective, which is that your body size does not necessarily dictate your fitness level,” she said. “We should not presume that because you are fat, that you are not fit or that you want to lose weight.”
The article was soundly made fun of on Twitter, with former heavyweight boxer Ed Latimore posting, “First math was a tool of white supremacy. Now it’s exercise. Pretty soon, food is gonna be a tool to continue systemic racism oppression.”
Meanwhile, conservative comedy due the Hodge Twins suggested that TIME Magazine was infringing on the over-the-top satirical content of The Babylon Bee.
“Paging @TheBabylonBee, they are stealing your content,” they tweeted.