Ever worried about his public image, Sharpton doesn't insult the obese on his TV program or radio show, but during his weekly Saturday personal appearances.
- During a March 29 address, Sharpton recalled running into a former classmate from Brooklyn’s Samuel J. Tilden High School. But the woman, now pushing 300 pounds, was no longer the physical specimen of her youth, a fact that made Sharpton rueful. “Ain’t nothing worse than ruining your life over somebody that don’t look that good anymore.”The woman, Sharpton recalled, “was slim, trim, the finest girl in Tilden.” Now, however, “she obese,” added Sharpton. The reverend then followed with the observation that, “Every fine girl is two big Whoppers away from being obese.”
- On April 5, Sharpton told of an upcoming community fashion show being organized by his daughter Ashley, and noted that some women, due to their size, would not be able to participate.Mimicking a passed-over candidate, Sharpton said, “Why Ashley didn’t have me model?” He answered himself, “’Cause you too fat! We doing full-body size, but we ain’t doing the oversize.” He added that “jumbo” women would not make the cut.After laughter subsided, Sharpton noted, “Since I lost weight I talk about fat folk real bad. I like keeping fat folk around me so I can just talk about them.”
- On the day before Easter, Sharpton mocked women anticipating a candy score the following day. “As old as you are… you overweight, obese, got diabetes looking for some corn candy and jelly beans.” He added, “Talk about the resurrection, you gettin’ ready to have a crucifixion if you eat them jelly beans.”Later in his address, Sharpton recalled that the last time he flew coach was a 1994 trip to South Africa with other preachers. He recalled being stuck in a middle seat between “two of the fattest preachers” on the trip.
- Chiding a portly aide during remarks in late-April, Sharpton said, “I know how to make you jog. All I got to do is just put a fried chicken sandwich right here.” As he said this, Sharpton mimicked holding the sandwich on a stick as a lure. “And you’ll run as far as I got that chicken sandwich.”
- While urging followers in late-May to attend a rally against Boko Haram at the United Nations, Sharpton said, “A lot of y’all ain’t doing nothing but going to lunch. And most of y’all don’t need no lunch. Y’all need to walk over to the UN and lose some weight anyhow.”
- During June 28 remarks, Sharpton recalled once ridiculing a female diner who ate across from him at Sylvia’s, the Harlem soul food restaurant. After watching the woman devour half a fried chicken, two sides, and dessert, Sharpton recalled, “I just got mad.” When the waitress asked if she wanted anything else, the woman “had the nerve” to ask for a cup of coffee with Sweet' n Low,” said Sharpton. “So I couldn’t take it anymore and said, ‘Miss, lemme ask you something. All of that you took, what do you need Sweet'n Low? I mean, you just make yourself feel better? You might as well pour the whole bag of sugar in the cup.” As he closed his remarks, Sharpton reminded the audience to attend a panel that afternoon, saying that attendees “don’t need to eat lunch. Swallow hard and stay right here. You too fat anyhow, you don’t need no nothing.”
Below is a video of Sharpton from his "wider" days: