Donna Simpson is making headlines the world over as she expresses her death wish. She wants to eat her way to 1,000 pounds and she wants you to watch her online — for a fee — as she kills herself in public.


My initial response to Donna’s story is that she wants you to pay to
watch her pretend suicide-by-eating online just so she can feed her
family and feed her face.  She reportedly spends $800.00USD a week on
food alone — but what if something more nefarious is afoot?

Donna is a mere 600 pounds right now and she wants notoriety and fame all the way to her
supposed death wish goal of 1,000 pounds and that is not average thinking and must not be abided.

If Donna’s death wish is real and not joking on us — her story is reprehensible. 

Why does she want the spotlight for her inevitable and early demise?

If she were eating arsenic or slashing her wrists, or pointing a loaded gun against her temple — instead of inhaling fast food — we would forcibly hospitalize her and, for her own good, we would make certain she was able to fight her mental illness.

Should we take people like Donna Simpson off the street and place them into protective custody so Donna-wannabes cannot continue to blatantly harm themselves while providing a poor example for their children? 

Can an unhealthy mother be legally declared unfit because of her obesity and her refusal to want to lose weight?

9 Comments

  1. I can’t get over the notion that she’s playing us in some way just to get money and attention.
    I think she’ll have a “change of heart” — in consideration of her children, only — and sign a big contract to lose the weight with some weight loss company.

  2. What tough questions– it seems like it plays into the whole notion of personal liberty. At what point can the government intervene and stop us from making our own bad choices? What makes this different from more overt suicide threats, that do trigger societal intervention? And if people eat excessively to a lesser degree, should someone intervene? Interesting issues to ponder.

    1. Thanks for your comment! The government already controls who can buy cigarettes and who can purchase a gun license and who can drink alcohol and the government also already restrict free access to drugs and medicinal marijuana. Why should caloric intake be any different? I believe we’re on track to monitor and punish this sort of purposeful overeating because it does affect the rest of us in higher taxes and mandatory healthcare costs.

      1. It makes sense to me– I think that there is a definite inconsistency in the way that we monitor people’s behavior. If we think that they might kill themselves we can place them involuntarily into a psychiatric facility to keep them from doing it. But it is perfectly within everyone’s right to poison themselves slowly through terrible diets, alcohol and drugs (though these things are regulated, as you say). The only downfall is that if we are taking responsibility for these people by regulating their behavior, we also have to put some sort of support system in place and make sure that they have access to affordable, healthy food. I live in a neighborhood where it’s a lot easier and cheaper to find fried chicken and orange soda, than quality fresh food. And there is a CSA in my ‘hood, but the membership cost is pretty steep! We already criminalize drugs, without guaranteeing people access to treatment. It would be a shame to punish people without giving them the tools to make more positive choices.
        I actually feel like this plays into the inconsistency of our government in general– we want to restrict abortion, but don’t want to spend any money to support the additional children that might result. We want to force hospitals to accept patients whether they have insurance or not, but mandating individuals to have health insurance is un-American.
        I realize I’m way off on a tangent. Is it crazy that a repugnant fame-whore made me this thoughtful about the direction that our national debate is taking in genearl?

        1. You make excellent points! There’s no “Dollar Menu” at the local organic vegetable cooperative! Any why not? Why not government-sponsored food programs that do not allow the purchase of sweets or sodas or any non-vital foodstuffs:

          http://urbansemiotic.com/2008/11/24/are-food-stamps-making-poor-children-fat/

          You’re right about abortion — save the fetus at all costs — until it turns 18 and kills somebody, then off with its head!

          Yes. We have to require people to be responsible for their own bodies and behaviors.

          http://wordpunk.com/2010/08/13/new-york-city-stops-the-sugar-train/

          We’re already paying for the poor decision-making of others, so why not directly have the obese among us pay a “calorie tax” for going over their daily requirement — just like we make smokers pay more for their injurious behavior:

          http://urbansemiotic.com/2010/07/02/a-stack-of-smokes-is-now-11-25-in-new-york-city/