Jennifer Livingston, a news anchor on WKBT in Lacrosse, WI, took a moment in today’s newscast to address a viewer who sent her an email—one criticizing her weight. But this unnamed correspondent didn’t just attack Livingston for being, as she says, “fat.” He assailed her for setting a bad example for young people facing an obesity epidemic.
Livingston’s calm but forceful reply, above, is one of the best addresses we’ve heard on the subject of bullying—both on its devastating effects and the importance of rising above it. She may be talking about calling some kid at school “fat,” but you could easily—as Livingston herself does—be talking about a boy who gets called “fag” or a girl who gets called “she-male.”
What Jennifer Livingston delivers is not an It Gets Better speech—she is speaking to the here and now. And she is showing by example how it’s possible to look around at the people who really matter to you and know that “the cruel words of one are nothing compared to the shouts of many.”
Do we smell a local Emmy?