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Tired of being fat and ugly?': Sign outside gym ignites controversy, threats of fine from city

A sign outside a Cross Fit in Pell City, Alabama, has ignited controversy — and threats of a fine. It reads, "Tired of being fat and ugly? Just be ugly." (Image source: YouTube screenshot)

Say what you want about Scott Campbell, owner of a Cross Fit in Pell City, Alabama — but one thing's for sure: He definitely knows how to draw attention to his gym.

Take for instance the sign outside his establishment that's been drawing a ton of controversy: "Tired of being fat and ugly? Just be ugly."

Campbell told WIAT-TV the city contacted him and said he needed to remove the sign or pay a $500 fine.

The reason?

He told the station the city manager informed him the sign doesn't fit size requirements.

Well, Campbell responded by posting a video on his Facebook page last week in which he said he's "not mean-spirited at all," that the sign is just a "playful jab" and an "attention grabber."

"When I started working out I was 300 pounds and had to find somebody who could relate to me and understand how to help me lose weight," he said on the clip, adding that his passion is helping others get into shape.

What's been the reaction to the sign?

The sign has received mixed reactions, WIAT reported, but that most people seem in favor of it.

Social media comments, Fox News noted, ranged from the likes of “Pay the fine and leave it up!!! Great sign" to “The sign should be taken down. Think about it, some [people] are already struggling being bullied & my opinion is that the sign is making it harder on [people] being bullied already. I’m not fat nor am I ugly.”

'We're a Christian-based gym'

Campbell added to WIAT that anyone who's offended by the sign should "come in and talk to me. We're super nice. I get along with everybody. I love everyone. We're a Christian-based gym. And so a message of love is what we preach here. You know, you can't take yourself too seriously. Especially when it comes to a fitness journey."

Image source: YouTube screenshot

What is the city saying?

“The owner is aware of his failure to properly request a permit and has since filed a request,” City Manager Brian Muenger told Campbell in an email, Fox News reported, citing the Washington Post. “The city does not object to the content of the sign.”

A GoFundMe page has been set up to cover the cost of a fine in order to keep the sign up, WIAT said.

Campbell added to the station that he's filling out paperwork to try and get the sign approved so he won't have to pay a fine and that any extra GoFundMe money will be donated to a Pell City charity.

Did the sign work?

Campbell added that the sign has fulfilled his hope for more clients, Fox News said.

“If you were offended by the sign, you would not fit in at the gym,” he added, the network noted.

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