by on Feb.02, 2012,

Today is Groundhog Day.  Before 1993,  Groundhog Day was all about whether the infamous groundhog, Punxsutawney Phil, was going to pop out of his burrow and see his shadow or not.  If he saw his shadow, he would retreat underground and winter would last for another six weeks.  Personally, if I was Punxsutawney Phil, and I popped up out of my burrow and saw throngs of strange people standing around staring at me I’d pop back underground in a flash! Thinking back, I can’t remember a single time that Phil did NOT pop back into his hole and winter was predicted to end early, and living in New York, it sure never felt like it did!

But then, in 1993, the movie Groundhog Day came out and similar to the old Hitchcock flick, Gaslight, the phrase Groundhog Day took on a new meaning.  If you are not familiar with the Bill Murray film, he is thrust into a reality where he keeps re-living Groundhog Day over and over and over.  Each morning he wakes up and it is the same day.  Each day he knows what is going to happen and eventually begins using the predictability in ways that are helpful to others.  He transforms into a more aware and less self-centered person as he plays with the hand that fate has dealt him.

One of the meta messages of the film was that for all of us, in some ways, life is like Groundhog Day.  Each morning when we wake up, we have a chance to pay attention more closely to those around us and tune in to events that sometimes seem invisible to us because we are busy, distracted, or just unconsciously going through our daily routines. We assume that things may be the same because they look the same and we are not used to digging deeper.  In fact, I am sure that some of you may have experienced a bit of that just now when you zoomed in on the billboard of the fat kids from Georgia.

“Enough already with this Deah, we’ve read about this already…so nu?   You’ve decided to just keep writing about the same thing over and over and over?  What is this…Groundhog Day?”

Well, yes…it is!  But that’s just a coincidence.  The reason I am writing about the billboards again is because there is an amazing event taking place TODAY!                     PLEASE READ ON!

If you haven’t heard about it yet, Children’s Hospital in Georgia is running an anti-obesity campaign that uses billboards of fat kids.  In my last blog I wrote about the  controversy surrounding these ads and the growing popular opinion that these billboards are more destructive than helpful.  Whether or not you feel that there is an obesity problem among children, the question being asked by many is whether a shaming campaign is a reasonable solution?

Today there is a powerful action taking place to put a billboard opposite one of the Strong 4 Life’s billboards that challenges their use of shame as a healthful intervention when it also gives a message to bullies that it’s o.k. to shame fat kids.

Ragen Chastain has teamed up with several people and has ignited a campaign today to raise money to buy that billboard in Georgia.    She writes about it brilliantly in her blog  (Ragen Chastain’s blog post)  and offers the opportunity to donate anywhere from 1 -100 dollars.  The goal is to get 1000 people to donate, in order to trigger Jay Solomon’s More of Me to Love matching fund of $5,000!


Look, I wouldn’t be asking if this wasn’t really important.  I NEVER use this blog for raising money, I have no advertisers, and barely plug my own book on this blog (www.leftoverstogo.com).  So if I’m breaking one of my blog tenets to do this, trust me, it’s a big deal.

In Dr. Deah’s Hollywood, The Georgia Billboards, LapBand Billboards and Bypass Billboards would all disappear.  But for now, I will settle for one billboard in Georgia STANDING up for the rights of the kids.  Won’t you join me?  DONATE NOW BY CLICKING HERE

And if you haven’t heard the song  STAND!! by Sly and the Family Stone for a while, after you have donated, go directly to You Tube and check it out!

It’s inspiring!  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z7Yakl_xIkc

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