CNN has a report
about a cluster of deaths from Anorexia, in Brazil.
The subject has become a morbid fascination for
Brazilians, and is even the theme of a popular TV soap opera. It has
also touched off a debate within Brazil’s fashion industry that has
long presented the rail-thin model as the paragon of female beauty.
The objection I have is that the article provides the heights and
weights of the women at their time of death. I don’t think
there is any way that the journalists or editors would know this, but
persons with Anorexia often are highly competitive. Reporting
how “successful” the deceased persons were at losing weight, the
article could increase the perceived competitive pressure.
Perhaps they think they are highlighting the danger of extreme weight
loss, and thereby cautioning against this behavior. But it
could just as easily have the opposite effect. It would be
far better for them to simply report the unfortunate deaths in a