A leading charity campaigner has called for a men’s health campaign, which shows a young man coughing up his testicles, to be banned. Read what Sam Thomas has to say about the “derogatory” #beatballs campaign.
—This is article #38 in our series of #100Voices4Men and boys
A new charity campaign video shows a young man vomiting his testicles onto a table in a pub in front of his blokey mates.
According to the #beatballs campaign, there are 180,000 men and boys with eating disorders in the UK, but only a quarter get help because they let their “balls get in the way of talking about it”.
Advocates for men with eating disorders have called for the video to be withdrawn and crticised the charity behind the campaign, Beat, for putting its brand before the voices of male sufferers.
Sam Thomas, the UK’s highest profile advocate for men with eating disorders has reacted angrily to the video. The founder and director for the charity Men Get Eating Disorders to told supporters:
“We need to stop this atrocious video before it causes real and very serious damage. I will not stand for it and nor will I tolerate this ignorance against male eating disorders or masculinity. Beat have clearly lost their way on this one, prioritising the ‘brand’ over the cause and people affected.
“Men Get Eating Disorders Too would like to make it publicly clear that we have no role to play in beat‘s ‘shock’ new video to be launched tomorrow to ‘raise awareness’ of men’s eating disorders.
“In our view, the video is gross content where a guy ‘coughs up’ his testicles in the pub with his mates. We’d advise that anyone who watches the clip that it is graphic viewing.”
UPDATE: FOLLOWING PRESSURE FROM CAMPAIGNERS, BEAT HAS BEEN WITHDRAWN THE VIDEO AND POSTPONED THE LAUNCH OF ITS #BEATBALLS CAMPAIGN. SEE GLEN POOLE’S ARTICLE AT TELEGRAPH MEN FOR MORE ON THIS STORY.
“MGEDT has responded to Beat saying the video is distasteful, nauseating and provoking merely for the pure sake of it. We, as a charity, continue to eradicate the stigma [in a way] that is dignified and respectful putting the voices of men first opposed to the brand. This viral campaign that simply aims to ‘seek attention’ and undermines the seriousness of men’s eating disorders and falls nothing short of desperate and reckless.
“We’ll be updating on the social networks in due course with next steps as we plan to take action to see this unhelpful and derogatory video removed from YouTube.”
—Picture credit: Flickr/Steve Boneham
To find out more about Sam Thomas’s work helping men with eating disorders visit Men Get Eating Disorders Too website.
You can find all of the #100Voices4Men articles that will be published in the run up to International Men’s Day 2014 by clicking on this link—#100Voices4Men—and follow the discussion on twitter by searching for #100Voices4Men.
The views expressed in these articles are not the views of insideMAN editorial team. Whether you agree with the views expressed in this article or not we invite you to take take part in this important discussion, our only request is that you express yourself in a way that ensures everyone’s voice can be heard.