“You just can’t shake it.”
When most people think about the targets of social media bullying and body-shaming, they probably don’t consider Pro Bowl NFL running backs. But Eddie Lacy of the Seattle Seahawks endures daily torment from the never-ending stream of trolls lurking on social media. “I could pull up my Twitter right now and there would be a fat comment in there somewhere,” he told ESPN The Magazine. “Like I could tweet, ‘Today is a beautiful day!’ and someone would be like, ‘Oh yeah? You fat.’ I sit there and wonder: ‘What do you get out of that?’ ”
Standing at 5’11, Lacy’s body type doesn’t automatically seem suited for a position that requires incredible speed and agility, but his performance on the field suggests otherwise. His weight has fluctuated from 231 coming out of college to 267 during a free-agent visit last offseason. But regardless of his weight, he’s constantly bombarded by memes of him eating Chinese food. Lacy once tweeted about craving “China food” in college, and ever since, the trolls won’t let him forget it. “You just can’t shake it,” he said. “I could be 225 and they’d still be like, ‘You’re still a fat piece of s---.’ ”
Image from Reddit/YouTube.
Lacy found comfort in food after his family was devastated by Hurricane Katrina in 2005. “I honestly just shut down,” Lacy says. Big family meals were one of the few joys he had as he was shuffled from home to home as his family recovered from the wreckage. “It was southern Louisiana cooking, so nothing healthy,” Lacy told ESPN. “No vegetables to speak of, I’ll tell you that. Typical dinner might be fried chicken, red beans and rice. Or pork and beans. Fried pork chops. Everything that is not good for you that tastes good, you know?”
After signing with Seattle last offseason, the team put a clause in his contract that pays him $55,000 every time he meets his monthly weight goal. But the public humiliation he feels after his weigh-ins make the clause more of a negative than a positive. Although the trolls will probably see his admissions as another reason for mockery, Lacy should be commended for going public with such a personal issue. By sharing his fight against body-shaming, he empowers those without a voice to find the courage to confront their own issues.