Earlier this week Kim Kardashian found another way to break the Internet. This time, she posted a selfie of herself nude in a mirror, with parts of her body censored off by black boxes.
Of course, the post sparked backlash from all sorts of people. Some claimed she shouldn’t post the selfie because “she’s a mother.” Chloe Moretz famously tweeted at Kim to use her platform to promote more than her body, and Bette Midler tweeted that if we want to see a new part of Kim, she’ll have to “swallow the camera.”
On International Women’s Day yesterday, Kim penned a blog post in defense of her actions. She wrote:
“I am empowered by my body. I am empowered by my sexuality. I am empowered by feeling comfortable in my 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.”
Well, Kim K, while I applaud you for being comfortable with your body and aiming to promote that all women do so and feel sexually empowered, you’re missing the point.
You can absolutely post a selfie of you naked. Go for it. I agree, just because “you’re a mother” doesn’t mean you can’t. You’re the one in charge of your body so you can do what you want with it.
What I have a problem with is that you’re promoting the idea that women are their bodies and that their bodies are their most important aspect. The entire point of International Women’s Day is to promote the minds, hard work and success of women beyond how society hypersexualizes their body. It aims to equalize the success of those who use the bodies they are born with and those who further their career with their mind (a point Pink missed entirely).
My problem lies in her blog post. Her entire defense about her selfie draws attention to the fact that she now promotes for young girls the empowerment that their body is what’s most important. I do hope that women and girls around the world become comfortable in their own skin, love their body, and embrace any “flaws” they might have. Body shaming of any kind isn’t OK. More than this, though, I hope women and girls around the world realize that they are more than their bodies.
I do question your intentions, Kim Kardashian. If you’re so comfortable with your “flaws,” why did you post a selfie from a year ago (25 pounds lighter) and disprove your penned “comfort with your body.” I am not body shaming, simply questioning how your actions equate to your words. Your tweet about your 25 pound lighter figure subverts the entire point of your blog post and body shames those who are 25 pounds heavier.
And while women are already famously made into sexual objects by magazine covers and headlines, movies and advertisements, it’s time this changes. That’s what you should have said, Kim Kardashian. That you can be both brilliant and sexy; that your mind is as important as your body; and that you should embrace your body no matter its shape or size, and realize that it’s not just what’s on the outside, what could sexually please another being, and what is seen in a naked mirror selfie that is all that matters.
Women should be sexually empowered- I am an advocate for sex positive feminism. But Kim K’s naked selfie added to the hypersexualization, objectification, and societal pressures that I already feel to “have the perfect body.”
And on International Women’s Day, Kim Kardashian could have said her selfie was to show that while she has a rockin’ body, she is so much more than that.