Wisconsin news anchor Jennifer Livingston appeared on network morning talk shows Wednesday — a day after her response to a viewer who called her fat went viral.
“What has happened has been really inspiring, but overwhelming at the same time,” she told the “Today” show’s Savannah Guthrie. “I have never gone in the public and said I was a shining example of what your health should be. And I have never said girls should aspire to have a body like mine.”
She said on “CBS This Morning”:
I have always struggled with my weight…since my daughter was born 10 years ago…it has been a roller-coaster ride of weight gain and loss. If I could choose and snap my fingers to be a size that I don’t have to buy off the plus-size rack, that would be great. But I’m not ashamed of myself, I’m proud of who I am. Talk to me about the stories I cover, not the way I look.
Kenneth W. Krause, the viewer who complained about Livingston’s weight, released this statement after the anchor’s editorial aired:
Given this country’s present epidemic of obesity and the many truly horrible diseases related thereto, and considering Jennifer Livingston’s fortuitous position in the community, I hope she will finally take advantage of a rare and golden opportunity to influence the health and psychological well-being of Coulee Region children by transforming herself for all of her viewers to see over the next year, and, to that end, I would be absolutely pleased to offer Jennifer any advice or support she would be willing to accept.
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel media writer Duane Dudek reports the YouTube video of Livingston’s remarks had over 1 million views, thanks in part to Ellen DeGeneres’ link to it. Dudek also notes that the La Crosse anchor’s brother is actor Ron Livingston, whose credits include “Swingers,” “Office Space,” “Sex and the City,” and voice work on “Family Guy.”
* Too fat for TV? Anchor fires back at critic; outpouring ensues (today.com)
* Livingston tells her critic: Talk to me about stories I cover (cbsnews.com)
* Anchor called obese appears on “Today,” “CBS Morning News” (jsonline.com)
* Livingston talks to a colleague about reaction to her editorial (facebook.com)