President Donald Trump is taking hydroxychloroquine to ward off the coronavirus. In response to that news, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi revealed what she thought of that decision.
“As far as the President is concerned, he’s our President and I would rather he not be taking something that has not been approved by the scientists, especially in his age group and in his, shall we say, weight group — morbidly obese, they say. So, I think it’s not a good idea.”
Pelosi made the statement on CNN to Anderson Cooper. As a result, #PresidentPlump began trending on Twitter. However, it opens the conversation further about how to criticize a sitting President.
Hydroxychloroquine is in a class of drugs called antimalarials. It is used to prevent and treat acute attacks of malaria. It is also used to treat lupus and rheumatoid arthritis.
Has the line been crossed between a reality check, formed from a bedrock of true concern, or is this low-key clowning?
Of course Twitter had to dig in mercilessly. However, is President Trump truly overweight?
Because the Center for Disease Control (CDC) doesn’t use the term “morbidly obese”, lets breakdown how they define obesity.
Obesity is defined as having a Body Mass Index (BMI) of 30 or higher. (BMI is calculated by taking “a person’s weight in kilograms divided by the square of height in meters,” according to the CDC website.
How large would Trump need to be to qualify as being “severely” obese?
According to CNN, with a BMI calculator, a 6 foot tall man weighing 300 pounds would have a BMI of 41. This would be considered “severely” obese.
What Is Obesity?
According to the White House, in his February 2019 annual physical, Trump, who is 6’3″, weighed 243 pounds. That gave him a BMI of 30.4 or just over the edge of “obesity”.
However, his weight is not morbid at all. The word morbid is described as suggesting an unhealthy mental state or attitude. Pelosi’s statement could be a reference to Trump’s love of fast food and lack of exercise but it sounded like a physical description.
For Trump to be considered “morbidly obese, he would need to weigh 320 pounds or more.
“I get exercise. I mean I walk, I this, I that,” Trump said to Reuters. “I run over to a building next door. I get more exercise than people think.”
In the book, “Trump Revealed” his lack of exercise theory was explained in more detail:
“After college, after Trump mostly gave up his personal athletic interests, he came to view time spent playing sports as time wasted. Trump believed the human body was like a battery, with a finite amount of energy, which exercise only depleted. So he didn’t work out.
“When he learned that John O’Donnell, one of his top casino executives, was training for an Ironman triathlon, he admonished him, ‘You are going to die young because of this.”
However, the Pelosi statement is borderline fat-shaming and can endanger Democrats’ image.