Until recently, I’ve never heard of this individual. Under the circumstances in which I did, I wish it had stayed that way.
Belle Gibson is reportedly the brains behind TheWholePantry, which is ostensibly a healthy-lifestyle application; there was to be a cookbook based on it. That all ended recently, when Gibson was essentially forced to admit she lied about having had several forms of cancer and donating to charities, apparently with no remorse for the lying per se.
By lying about having had cancer and then foregone chemotherapy and other cancer treatments and ‘cured’ her cancers solely by means of a healthy diet and lifestyle, Gibson may have contributed to the needless suffering and death of a healthy portion of people, who were desperate for some shred of hope, apparently thinking, ‘Hey, it worked for her, maybe it will work for me’–all because one Belle Gibson decided to heed the siren song of easy money. And I wonder how the charities she claimed to donate to felt when they didn’t see any of that money in their coffers. (The Wikipedia page which tells this story claims the Victorian State authorities are investigating Gibson and TheWholePantry’s claims of charitable donations.) But the main issue here, as far as I’m concerned, is the fact that Gibson swindled people, and may have cost a number of them their lives. I, for one, hope Gibson spends some time inside a jail cell, simply for fraud–if it doesn’t teach her a lesson, then it stands some chance of sending a message: If you follow in one Annabelle Natalie Gibson’s footsteps, you’re going to get fucked.
And I just love how Gibson claims she lied because she had a difficult childhood, in an obvious, and pathetic, attempt to absolve herself, and convince the rest of us to absolve her, of any responsibility for her actions and their consequences. It may not even be true, but, if it is, in saying it, Gibson is just rubbing salt in the wounds she inflicted on her victims and their families, and, in the bargain, insults those of us who had difficult, even traumatic, childhoods yet managed to grow up to become more or less decent people and contributing, productive members of society, rather than sociopathic, parasitic wastes of space like Gibson. As is so often said, a difficult childhood is no excuse for any bad behaviour in adulthood.
I realize Gibson had some enablers, chief among them Elle Australia (‘The Most Inspiring Woman You’ve Met This Year,’ ‘What We Know About Belle Gibson’), Bespoke Approach, and the writers who wrote so glowingly about Gibson and her–ahem–story without doing their due diligence; even Pantheon and Penguin Books and Apple worked with Gibson and promoted TheWholePantry until they realized it was built on a foundation of falsehoods, in which case they cut ties with Gibson and TheWholePantry. But I insist on putting the majority of the responsibility for this fiasco on Gibson, simply because she got this particular ball of bullshit rolling, and because of the principle of cui bono–literally translated from Latin, ‘to whose benefit’–and, let’s face it, Gibson’s actions were for her own benefit. Healthy lifestyle? It seems here that the lifestyle that Belle Gibson has had–apparently even before she created TheWholePantry–is being full of shit. And, it seems, it will be her legacy.