A Boob Move

Peter Cavanaugh

The image before the jump is a sort of diptych; the same photo printed twice, side by side, where one is grayscale and the other color. The subject is a young woman with wet hair and a mesh top exposing, to some degree, the skin underneath. The image after the jump, the jump you make because the headline is too convincing not to–“Kendall Jenner Just Turned 18, Already Posting Adult Pics Online [NSFW]”–is the same image uncropped. What is revealed are two shadowy breasts with perhaps a nipple-sighting.

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Why debase the photo with a title usually reserved for leaked Snapchat pics? Do we attack her simply for being a Kardashian? Are you urging us to assume this is a gateway photo, where today it’s a pedestrian fashion shoot showcasing the female form and tomorrow she’s baring all for a first-person hump-a-thon? Why is “aspiring fashion model” in quotes? Is it because she has means, connections. Is nepotism a trend uniquely found in the world of moneyed people? Isn’t it the job of 18-year-olds to be aspiring somethings? Do we call this photo “adult” because it contains a pixely rendition of a female nipple? Why perpetuate this shameful, cover-thy-eyes perception of female breasts, when the nipples of Justin Bieber, pubescent and post-, have decorated this site not as an issue of focus, but because a header image was needed for a paragraph of unrelated trivia?

Sure it is a hazy, oft-argued line, that between pornography and art, but what this post shows is the line between journalist and mouth-breather is even thinner.

The struggle for gender equality is well documented on Gawker–the story posted directly after Kendall Jenner’s, in fact, celebrates the first four women to ever pass the Marine Corps’ infantry combat training regime. Why put a pause on your efforts then? “We understand women, on a daily basis, are hit with way more shit than men, buuuuut, this rich bitch wants to be a model and look at her posting these tittay pics ayyy.”

A cursory knowledge of the fashion world would lead one to assume these are photos you find in an aspiring model’s portfolio; a non-story. But that’s no fun, and you have to pay the hit machine every now and again. So let’s collectively shit on a young woman and remind ourselves once more that as soon as that female nipple comes out we’re free to turn tail on any sort of progress we might’ve made.

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