1. An Army veteran named John Burk, who describes himself as a “fitness motivator,” has gone viral for a Facebook video in which he describes overweight people as “utterly repulsive and disgusting.”
The video has gotten over 2.5 million views on his page, and another 3 million on a separate page that reposted it.
3. “To the overweight people: No, I’m not going to accept you for who you are, with that bullshit excuse of ‘you should love me because I’m beautiful,’” the 31-year-old says in the clip.
“Your personality might be beautiful, but your body is not,” he adds. “It is not OK to be overweight.”
5. Burk’s target is not people “dealing with a thyroid problem or things like that,” but the “lazy” people who become obese and then let their children become obese, which he says will lead to them getting bullied.
And then you’re going to wonder why your children are getting made fun of in school. Yeah, that’s a fact of life, people. Bullying is out there, there are bullies out there. Who are they going to go for first? Overweight kids. That’s just how life is.
7. At the end, he adds, “This isn’t me being fucking angry. This isn’t me trying to fat-shame. This is me saying you need to change your life before a doctor comes in and says, ‘Look, I’m sorry, there’s nothing else I can do, we have to take the leg.’”
9. Burk, a veteran who said he’s currently stationed at Fort Stewart in Georgia, told BuzzFeed News he made the video after seeing scores of people on his page making “flat out excuses” for why they couldn’t exercise.
“The soft and tender-hearted approach works for some,” he said, “but after having trained soldiers for over 12 years now, I know what works best: blunt, in-your-face truth that slaps you so hard that it forces you to step back and start self-analyzing to see if there’s any validity in what you’ve just been told.”
11. People who watched the video had wildly different opinions on Burk’s polarizing tactic. Some criticized it as being a hateful and derogatory rant.
16. While others, in greater numbers, thanked him for his blunt honestly, seeing the video as a much-needed push toward getting healthier.
20. Burk doesn’t really seem to care either way what people think — as long as he manages to motivate a few. “People think I’m an asshole, and that’s fine, but they don’t know the real me,” he told BuzzFeed News.
“They can’t see why I do it. I don’t do it out of hatred, I do it out of love, because there is a better life out there, and for some, it just takes a good hard verbal kick in the ass to get moving. That’s where I come in. I’m that asshole.”
- Tom Perez has been named chair of the Democratic National Committee. He was Obama's Labor Secretary.