GOP Rep. Matt Gaetz Facing Backlash For Fat-Shaming Teen Activist, Who Hits Back ‘Aren’t I Too Old For You?’
Controversial Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Florida) is getting slammed on social media for making fat-phobic and misogynistic comments about abortion rights activists on Saturday.
“Why is it that the women with the least likelihood of getting pregnant are the ones most worried about having abortions? Nobody wants to impregnate you if you look like a thumb,” Gaetz said at the Turning Point USA Student Action Summit in Tampa, Florida.
“These people are odious from the inside out. They’re like 5′ 2″, 350 pounds, and they’re like, ‘Give me my abortions or I’ll get up and march and protest.'”
Displeased Twitter users took to the platform to hit back at Gaetz.
“I’m actually 5’11. 6’4 in heels,” Olivia Julianna, a 19-year-old Texan who works as a political strategist with Gen-Z for Change, responded in a tweet. “I wear them so small men like you are reminded of your place.”
Gaetz responded with a tweet of a Newsmax article with the headline “Florida Rep. Matt Gaetz blasted abortion activists in a rant sure to raise dander of his political opponents,” captioning the reposted article with, “dander raised…” with a picture of Julianna.
Julianna fired back, tweeting: “Am I not a little too old for you Matt? I know you have a thing for targeting teenagers but 19 is on the cusp don’t you think?”
“What Gaetz didn’t know when he decided to blast my appearance to his millions of followers is that I have struggled with eating disorders my entire life and was hospitalized in December in part because of it,” Julianna told Newsweek.
“I am now in great standing and in good health maintaining my diabetes and other chronic illnesses that have contributed to my body image issues—but if I was not, this kind of attack could have been catastrophic to my mental health.”
“A sitting congressman decided that body shaming a teenager was appropriate. That is despicable. What’s even more despicable is that said congressman is allegedly sexually predatory to minors,” she added. “If I was Matt Gaetz I’d worry more about potential investigations into sexual misconduct and less about teenage activists.”
“It’ll be a cold day in hell when I stop rallying for justice because a Republican wants me to. Matt Gaetz is a creep, and as a side note; if you’re going to publicly shame someone for the way they look, you should be ready to look in the mirror. Seems like Matty wasn’t taught that saying about throwing stones in glass houses,” Julianna said.
Fred Guttenberg, whose daughter was killed in the Parkland school shooting, was also unhappy with Gaetz’s comments. He called him “pathetic” with “insecurities with his manhood.”
Sari Beth Rosenberg added: “There is no bottom when you’re as pathetic & desperate as @mattgaetz to tweet this. He should be so lucky as to be as brilliant & beautiful inside and out as the amazing human & activist @0liviajulianna.”