According to the calendar, Tuesday was International Women's Day. But this holiday wound up being marked by another memorable — maybe even counterproductive — event. Although there was plenty of activism and feminism going on, something else happened: It became the day the public weighed in on the naked selfie that Kim Kardashian posted Monday morning. At this point, the fact that the reality star posed nude should not be shocking. She's already done so numerous times, most memorably Paper magazine's cover, where she vowed to #BreakTheInternet. Yet instead of letting her be, celebrities began either jumping down her throat or coming to her rescue — and even those who were trying to help, in some ways, made the situation worse. After all the backlash, Kardashian penned an empowering blog post about loving her body. This part sums it up best:
It’s 2016. The body-shaming and slut-shaming—it’s like, enough is enough. I will not live my life dictated by the issues you have with my sexuality. You be you and let me be me.
I am a mother. I am a wife, a sister, a daughter, an entrepreneur and I am allowed to be sexy.
In three words, she says exactly what I'm thinking — "enough is enough." Even though she essentially dropped the mic with that essay, people are still coming after her and I don't understand why. She may be a social media icon with millions of followers, but I don't think even Kardashian could have predicted how viral this naked selfie go or that it would spark such a heated discussion days later. As she once said when getting criticized for cropping her daughter North out of a photo, "I was feeling my look! Can I live?!?!" The answer: apparently not.
For example, on Tuesday night, Pink posted a lengthy tweet, which was seemingly connected. She wrote about women getting attention for their bodies, and how who don't do that have "self respect" and will "never have to make silly excuses" for themselves. As a response, Amber Rose leapt to Kardashian's defense on Wednesday, but made clear she wasn't "dissing" Pink. She wrote, "If a grown mother of 2 is comfortable with her body and wants to show it off that's none of ur business or anyone else's."
On one hand, I love that Amber Rose (especially after her rocky history with Kardashian's husband) stood up for a fellow woman. But at the same time, how did this become a battle? Why is everyone taking sides? Even those who are trying to help are inadvertently further dividing the women of Hollywood. Especially when the argument is, "Well, you once did XYZ." Amber Rose called out Pink for previously "damn near naked swinging from a rope (Beautifully)." It's as if everybody's tallying up any risqué things other people ever did and throwing it back in their faces. Not unlike Kardashian's shoutout to Chloe Grace Moretz's Nylon cover.
Even when Miley Cyrus joined in the discussion and called out several of the ladies involved — Moretz, Kardashian, and Bette Midler — for going after one another on International Women's Day, she managed to invalidate her own point. She said the ladies were acting "tacky AF" and even threw in the C-word. Doesn't it seem counterproductive to drag the women down while calling them out for belittling one another? I do believe she was getting at the right point, but not quite the best delivery on that message.
When someone calls out Kardashian, and then another person calls out that person, it becomes an endless cycle of negativity. Instead of pitting celebs against each other, can't everybody move on to an issue that actually matters? You know, one that actually has a potential impact on people's lives. What about last week's SCOTUS Whole Woman's Health v. Hellerstedt hearing regarding women's reproductive rights? Or how about the fact that Donald Trump is currently the Republican frontrunner? Either of those things could have detrimental, lasting effect on our nation. Kardashian posing naked in front of her mirror? Nah, not so much.
Somehow this discussion has evolved from Kardashian loving her body, to the general public deciding whether she should be allowed to do so. She's already made it clear that she does not care what others think; she likes herself, even if they don't. That's a powerful message and should be the true focus here.
I can't help but think of that Mean Girls scene where Tina Fey's character Ms. Norbury laments, "You've got to stop calling each other 'sluts' and 'whores.' It just makes it OK for guys to call you 'sluts' and 'whores.'" Most of the celebrity responses I've seen regarding Kardashian's selfie have been from other women. If they're all ganging up on her, what example does that set for men to not do the same?
So, let's take Kardashian's message to heart. Enough is enough. Let's celebrate Women's History Month in a positive, productive way — by coming together to support causes that matter and applauding women who aren't afraid to be themselves.