Nicole Arbour, the comedian who has been all over social media for her controversial fat-shaming YouTube video, “Dear Fat People,” is not taking anything she has said back or apologizing for her video.
She feels quite the opposite, actually. She’s feels proud to have started the conversation about body image and weight.
In a recent interview with TIME Magazine, the YouTube star, who holds 159,000 subscribers, stated that the video is satirical.
“I feel it’s really important that we make fun of everybody,” she told TIME. “I think [what] brings us together and united us as people is that we can poke fun at all of us.”
The video’s message, which currently has almost three million views, drew reaction videos from other popular YouTube stars, comedians, and journalists, scolding Arbour for criticizing people who weigh more than her.
Majority of Arbour’s criticism has been due to her lack of subtlety in her rant.
“I don’t feel bad for you because you are taking your body for granted…” the 30-year-old said in her video. “What are you going to do, fat people? What are you going to do? You going to chase me? I can get away from you by walking at a reasonable pace.”
Arbour told TIME that she doesn’t see her comments as bullying, but rather a harsh eye opener. She intended to tell the truth, and as most comedians do, she did it in an offensive and satirical manner.
Her hope in releasing the video was for it to make people realize that obesity is a prevalent issue in today’s society, and would encourage healthy-eating and exercise. She had a lot to say about her words being described as offensive.
“I find seeing someone’s head being blown off offensive,” she said. “I find children starving in a country with more than enough food offensive. I find women’s bodies being mutilated for religious purposes, that is offensive to me. But words and satire I don’t find offensive.”
When she was asked about her own body image experiences, she responded by explaining that all girls suffer from some form of body image issues, stating, “Every single girl has an issue with their body—we never think we’re perfect, ever.”
One particular YouTube personality who commented on Arbour’s video, Grace Helbig, created a video response titled “Oops We’re All Humans.”
I was bummed that someone that seemed really smart and funny would speak about weight that way,” she said in the video. “I’ve had my own issues with body image in the past some really dark personal struggles I’ve really worked on. Most people with body image issues are pretty self aware deep down.”
Helbig also criticized Arbour for using the video and its growing audience to “leverage subscribers and attention in a really negative way.” Other people who have commented on the highly controversial video have suggested that Arbour’s claim that her account was temporarily suspended was also part of her her publicity stunt.
Despite the controversy and hate that Arbour is receiving, she stands by her video, not apologizing for a single word she said.
“I’m not apologizing for this video, but if someone got something from it, then that’s great, fantastic. Comedy with a message, let’s do it.”