Like with most things, this phrase has been used and abused to the point in which it holds no weight. Body positivity isn’t about doing whatever you want or showing off your body, it’s about having a positive self reflection and encouraging others to the same end.
I think messages and movements tend to take on a whole life of their own, sometimes bringing awareness to actual issues like #BlackLivesMatter, #MeToo, #TimesUp, etc and other times getting used as an excuse or example to fit a pervasive narrative and justification for violence.
With all this being said, I wanted to use the current Lizzo situation as an example because it is the epitome of what I’m talking about. On one hand you have Lizzo free to express herself, her sexuality, her confidence in any way she please, but understanding to share at a level that is comfortable for you and for other people. I am in no means condoning the fatphobic remarks, but I would like to point out that it seems more of a stunt than an actual fashion choice, and that’s purely out of speculation on my part. Now on the other hand if I was one to preach about respectability, I would say it wasn’t appropriate because of the family friendly environment. Both of these responses come from a place of wanting to police fat bodies to be more palatable to the masses.
In my personal opinion, not that it matters, but I don’t think the outfit was appropriate for the venue and I would say that about anyone of any size, small or big. I won’t however condemn her for living her life and dressing how she wants in any event.
To be genuinely body positive I think we need to regulate ourselves and how we try to police the bodies of others. Understanding that there’s different types and that it’s okay to be whatever size you desire to be. But getting society as a whole to be non judgemental is so far beyond just getting people to stop bullying others.