Until yesterday, I had spent my life blissfully unaware of a certain Mr Kenneth Tong – unfortunately, this happy state was to be shattered when I noticed a retweet of a comment by Simon Cowell. Now, Mr Cowell and I are not often in agreement, but on this issue we appear to be unified. Cowell called Tong Twitter’s ‘new village idiot’ – I would go further than this and say that Tong is a tool, a moron, and a sickening individual. Why? This (taken verbatim from his Twitter account) is why:
“Proudly endorsing managed anorexia. Nothing tastes as good as thin feels.”
As if that wasn’t horrific enough, his twitter feed for the last week or so is basically full of statements endorsing the above sentiment – “To not be thin is a modern day sin”, goes a recent one, and the entire thing is pretty much a sickening cavalcade of similar bullshit. Despite bragging about how his wretched opinions have got him into Twitter’s worldwide ‘trending’ list, Tong wants us to believe that this isn’t a publicity stunt and that he means what he says. However you look at it, his actions are morally reprehensible – to say this sort of stuff simply to provoke a reaction or increase his own public profile would be bad enough, but the fact that he genuinely believes this shit is beyond the pale.
Newsflash for you you Tong: Anorexia isn’t a lifestyle choice, it’s not something that can be ‘managed’ – it’s an illness, and one that millions of people fight against every day. I have seen it affect people that I care about, both physically and mentally. For cretins like you to promote this as a positive thing, to say that a girl is ‘imperfect’ unless she can attain size zero, to try and inspire women to inflict such misery on themselves… you obviously have no idea about the realities of anorexia. Now I’m not trying to say I’m a fucking expert here, but I have seen enough to know that you are sick and wrong.
Now granted, should we care about the opinion of some no-mark moron whose only claim to fame is being on Big Brother? Maybe not, but Tong isn’t the first person to promote anorexia on the internet, and sadly he won’t be the last. All I can ask is that if you have found inspiration in the words of Tong or other pro-anorexia ‘campaigners’, please seek help. Look up sites that could help you battle eating disorders instead of searching for ‘thinspiration’ pictures, see a doctor, talk to someone – just don’t think you should aspire to something that rips lives apart.
Update: 11th January
Mr Tong has now come clean on Twitter and admitted that his promotion of managed anorexia was a hoax as part of a social experiment, and has apologised for his actions. You can read his full explanation and apology here. It does, however, paint a fairly damning picture of Mr. Tong that he would fragrantly use such a sensitive subject in what essentially amounts to an exercise in self-promotion – hungry for fame but unable to find it, he seems happy to accept infamy as an alternative.
Update: 12th January
Please read this interview that Tong did with Johann Hari shortly before putting the above apology on Twitter. All I can say is wow. Just wow.