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France Bans Too Thin Models. Why Stop There?

April 06, 2015 2 min read

On April 3, 2015, France made it official and passed a law that subjects agents and fashion houses that hire excessively thin models to fines and possible jail time. The law requires that models present a medical certificate that proves they have a BMI of at least 18 before they are hired. French President Francoise Holland is attempting to crack down on the promotion of anorexia. There is a second part of this law that targets pro-anorexia websites and sites that promote "excessive thinness by encouraging eating restrictions for a prolonged period of time, resulting in risk of mortality or damage to health." Again, those found to be in violation face fines and jail time. skinny France isn't alone in this ban. Madrid and Israel have already enacted similar bans based on BMI. In New York, Diane von Furstenberg and the CFDA released model guidelines in 2012 but these concerned themselves more with age than thinness. France is arguably the fashion capital of the world. So the question on most people's minds is whether or not other countries will follow suit. I have a better question: why stop there? If the idea is to remove unhealthy body images and unhealthy bodies from the fashion industry, than shouldn't overweight models be banned as well? It is no secret that being overweight is ridiculously unhealthy. Extra weight can lead to heart disease, diabetes and a whole host of other nasty illnesses. Why should a high BMI be given a pass? I realize Western society has spent years making fun of and shaming overweight people but fear of being insensitive or hurting someone's feelings shouldn't trump concern for promoting healthy bodies. If too thin is too unhealthy to walk the runway, than so is overweight. I know you have thoughts on this, now's your chance to tell us what you think!

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