EDITORIAL: Why Pink’s shade towards Kim K is not okay

A nude uploaded to Twitter by Kim Kardashian, with the caption "Liberated"

A nude uploaded to Twitter by Kim Kardashian, with the caption “Liberated”

It’s been a bit of a wild week for women. Kim Kardashian posted not one but two nude selfies, and faced criticism for it. This is something I already mentioned in my post “Five times people got #IWD2016 horribly wrong“, but the situation is escalating and I feel it’s right to talk about it some more.

I am not a fan of the Kardashians – if you’ll forgive the joke, I just can’t keep up with them. I can’t really show much interest in a woman who is famous for being rich, a sex tape and being married to Kanye West. I have even less interest in a woman who published a book of selfies, called Selfish. Something about it just makes me feel she isn’t much of a true celebrity.

Despite this, I felt that I did side with her latest statement about a recent nude selfie uploaded to Twitter – and plenty have agreed with her. While the statement was lengthy, some of the key things I found were:

  • I don’t do drugs, I hardly drink, I’ve never committed a crime – and yet I’m a bad role model for being proud of my body?
  • I am empowered by my body. I am empowered by my sexuality. I am empowered by feeling comfortable in my own skin. I am empowered by showing the world my flaws and not being afraid of what anyone is going to say about me. And I hope that through this platform I have been given, I can encourage the same empowerment for girls and women all over the world.
  • I don’t want her [my daughter] to grow up in a world where she is made to feel less-that for embracing everything it means to be a woman.
  • It’s 2016. The body-shaming and slut-shaing – it’s like, enough is enough. I will not live my life dictated by the issues you have with my sexuality.
  • I am a mother. I am a wife, a sister, a daughter, an entrepreneur and I am allowed to be sexy.

After Kim faced comments which can only be described as slut-shaming – something she has continued to face in the thirteen years since a sex tape was leaked – I feel this is totally appropriate.

As women, are we seriously allowed to think it’s acceptable to judge each other and comment on what makes someone a “real woman”? Some feel empowered by how they look naked. Some feel empowered by how they look in lingerie. Some feel empowered by how they look clothed. What difference does it make to anyone else?

On-the-decline popstar Pink, however, posted a statement where she slammed nudity as empowerment in what can only be described as shade in Kim K’s direction. “It may not ever bring you as much ‘attention’ or bank notes as using your body, your sex, your tits and asses… You will feel something deeper than the fleeting excitement… You will feel something called pride and self-respect.”

Women celebrating their sexuality in 2005. Photo by Jacob Applebaum, courtesy of Wiki Commons

Women celebrating their sexuality in 2005. Photo by Jacob Applebaum, courtesy of Wiki Commons

Along with saying “up your real worth”, it’s pretty clear from this that Pink insinuates that any woman who chooses to pose naked or uses her body as empowerment is not a worthy woman. And here is why she is wrong. 

Society sexualises a woman’s body. A man can be topless at the beach, but a woman can’t. Female nipples are blurred in images and videos. I don’t have to discuss at great length the breastfeeding in public debate – women are asked to leave businesses or asked to cover up when others feel uncomfortable. 

If a man sleeps with many women, he’s a stud and patted on the back by his mates. If a woman sleeps with many men, she’s a slut and shunned in society. This outright gender inequality and assumption that women must always be pure is something that is utterly ridiculous. 

Others argue that a man commenting on Kim’s (or any woman’s) decision to upload a nude is hypocritical and sexist, like Gone Girl actress Emily Ratajkowski, who also appeared topless in Robin Thicke’s infamous Blurred Lines Video.

Slut-shaming and body-shaming are both incredibly important issues that our society as a whole has got to address. Passing judgement on a woman for how much she likes sex, how many sexual partners she’s had, and what turns her on – all are atrocious things to do, especially as a fellow woman. On the same level, commenting on another woman’s body if she’s happy with how she looks and is happy to share it is also disgraceful. Especially on what was International Women’s Day – a day where all women should stand together and support each other through good and bad.

Of course, it’s up to you whether you even take photos of yourself naked, let alone post them to the Internet. I, for one, am not going to judge you for whichever decision you make. It’s your body. Do with it whatever you like!

Jessica Allen

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