News Anchor, Jennifer Livingston, Stands Up to Bully Who Called Her Fat

Here’s a recent video (which has gone nuts) of CBS WKBT News Anchor Jennifer Livingston standing up for herself and others after receiving an email criticizing her for being too fat to be on TV.

The video has sparked a lot of debate, and a lot of mudslinging. So, what do you think about it? Is the price people pay for being on video the fact that they have to maintain ideal body shapes? I know that both Cali and I are routinely attacked about our appearance…


  1. says

    If you want to see a real tragic case of bullying, check this out:
    This news anchor is making a bigger deal out of it than I would think is necessary: the mail didn’t seem obscene or offensive and she kinda abused her position in the spotlight. It’s her right to do so, I just think that specific case is not a big enough deal so it should be on the news.

  2. says

    The main thing information and it should be qualitative and qualitatively presented and who presents it, not important. That can who criticizes has complexes?

  3. Donna says

    Anyone that is an adult that has never learned to hold their tongue – well – it says a lot about the parents that raised them.

    Go back in history and you will find that at one time being over weight was more sought after then now. With the actors and models that are constantly in the news, the fashion mongers, the diet programs, the commercials and the entire news media that show tall and thin women, it is no wonder the present day society has their minds up their back ends!

    For an adult who is supposed to have common sense (yeah, right) to openly attack someone for the way that they look is somethiing I am glad that I taught my children differently!

    After being bullied in school I have often sat here and wondered how many of those people that did that to me have raised their children the same or have they raised them differently? My guess is about 50% were raised such as the person who wrote that email.

    When did we as a society stop trying to see the person inside of someone and just look at the outside and pass judgement?

    • Jennifer says

      Donna, Your first sentence could not be more incorrect. There are obviously other things which factor in here. What if the person has no filter? What if the person has Asperges like myself? On another note, most people will develop their own personality COMPLETELY regardless of what their parents attempt to teach them. That is a fact. The fact that he is assuming she should be fit simply because she is considered a role model is wrong. However, he is not “bullying” her. I’ve been bullied. This is not it.

  4. Feargal says

    The real problem here is including the phrase “Stands Up to Bully Who Called Her Fat”.

    The person who wrote the email is not the bully – its is Jennifer and her colleagues at WKBT who are the real bullies. They took a private email that simply asked Jennifer to “present and promote a healthy lifestyle” and attacked the email writer very publicly. The writer never asked Jennifer to maintain a “perfect” body shape – simply a more healthy one. By Jennifers own admission – she is obese and by the video account seems reasonably ok with that.

    Those who chose to be in the public eye are visual role models. Thats simply a matter of fact. Allowing a news reporter to be obese is similar to allowing them to smoke on air.

    Obesity is a huge problem in this country and WKBTs message that obesity is ok and that anyone who politely calls them out on it is a bully is truly scary.

    The people aplogizing is not the email writer – but WKBT (the real bullies)

    • Chris says

      Feargal is 100% correct. The word “FAT” doesn’t appear anywhere in the email sent to Jennifer. The emailer doesn’t even directly call her “obese” (although he very strongly infers it). As for “bullying” I can’t find a single pejorative in the entire email, the email was not made public until Jennifer did so, there was no taunting or name-calling; where’s the bullying? Finally, enough about obesity being only about your appearance. Diabetes, stress on your joints, stress on your respiratory system and heart, hardening of the arteries are just a few of the problems exacerbated by obesity. Everyone should stop being so vain thinking that being overweight only means you don’t look good in your bikini. It ALSO means you are shortening your life (which leaves your family without you sooner than necessary), and that you are (or soon will be) using extra medical resources that are raising everyone else’s healthcare costs.

      • says

        Clearly both of you need a lesson in what bullying is. It is not simply the use of perjoratives, taunting or name-calling. Bullying is not just acts of violence. It is defined as the use of force or coercion to intimidate or abuse others. The person that wrote that email bullied her by attempting to shame her in to doing what he wanted because she did not fit in to what he thought was ideal for a role-model in the community. That is bullying by coercion regardless of how politely it is writen.
        Furthermore, obese does not mean unhealthy. My father in law has Type 2 diabetes and isn’t overwieght at all. My mother in law is about 150 pounds over wieght and is perfectly healthy. Obese is a body type not a lifestyle. An unhealthy life style doesn’t depend on wieght. Go talk to a sumo wrestler or football lineman and tell them they are unhealthy and unfit because of their wieght. The point is, you are continuing the bullying by assuming because she is over wieght that she is unhealthy. You are also making the erronious assumption that skinny people are somehow more healthy the people that are overwieght. Both are bad assumptions.

  5. says

    John P, while you and Cali may be attacked for your appearance by a bunch on internet trolls, you and Cali both have normal Body Mass Index numbers and are not likely adding to the over all health costs of society the way that obese people do, no different than smokers.

  6. Greg says

    How can she even be upset. Has she looked in the mirror? Its true! She is obese! So why is she getting so upset at a very politely worded email? In my opinion she needs not only physical help, but mental help as well.

  7. john says

    As a person that has struggled with his weight for years, i can am thankful to see someone in the media spend the time talking about this issue. I will happily stand beside Jennifer in her message of anti bulling. Also, I appreciate that this station is willing to have on air anchors that are larger than the range of size 0-6. I view this as helpful to those teens are struggling with their weight. I think the best example for how challenging this struggle is is to watch how hard it has been for even Opera to maintain a so called “healthy” weight. with here resources personal trainers and personal chefs, she has still had challenges. I am finally having some luck getting some weight off but i have had to become a “calaory N**zy” to do so. and Jennifer is correct, it is comments like the ones she received that hurt the most.

    on a totally side note, how can any one say anything bad about the way you or cali look.

    • Profile photo of John P. says


      Yes, losing weight is challenging for everyone. For Cali and I, the range of acceptable weight is extremely thin. Right now I’m about 7 pounds over my ideal weight (literally, 7 pounds) and people tell me that I look fat. Mind you – people who see me in person routinely comment about how fit I am! But NOT on video…

      I’m not saying this is good or bad, just that it’s reality. People like to look at beautiful people. Or at least fit people (I’m certainly not beautiful, but I’m forgiven if I’m very fit). When Cali is in ultra-lean shape, she is lauded as the best of both – beautiful and fit.

      I don’t know what the answer is here. I don’t think people are going to change. So in my case the price I pay to be on video without ridicule is absolutely constant. Watch what I eat, drink, and how much I exercise. I trade that joy, for hopefully some other type of joy…

      John P.