Only female celebrities targeted for photo hacks

Katherine Middleton, Reporter

Over the past few weeks, numerous private photos of female celebrities have been stolen and put on the Internet. It started with Hunger Games star Jennifer Lawrence, and this week nude photos of Kim Kardashian and Rihanna were also leaked.

It seems as though everyone felt sorry for Lawrence, but when it came to Kardashian and Rihanna, no one had as much sympathy. Rihanna made headlines over the summer when posting her topless photos for French magazine “Tui” got her Instagram account suspended. While we have seen these women naked or nearly naked in some capacity, it’s important to note that there is a huge difference between taking photos for a photo shoot and having your private photos posted online for everyone to see.

Yes, celebrities entertain us and give us something to talk about, but that doesn’t mean they don’t have a right to privacy.

There were no male celebrities targeted in this crime against privacy. Surely someone like James Franco has some compromising photos of himself, right? So why is it that only female celebrities have been targeted? The female body is always up for scrutiny, celebrity or not. The fact that there are no men included in this scandal speaks volumes about the way women and their bodies are treated in society. Do women not have the right to take and send photos to whomever they wish without the threat of those private photos being posted online?

From a young age girls are told to cover up in order to avoid the male gaze, but regardless of how covered up a woman is, men will always stare and say gross things. Men are allowed to openly express their sexuality, and often times this sexual expression comes at the cost of a woman’s dignity.

Sending a photo to someone doesn’t make it okay to share that photo with the world or even friends, yet this happens to women more and more every day. The solution isn’t to stop taking sexy photos for those you care about, but to raise the level of respect for women period. Men don’t get penalized for sharing nude photos of themselves, even though in some cases they’re more comfortable with sending them. This could be a direct effect of the policing of women’s bodies — if men were scrutinized and judged for what they do with their bodies even half as much as women are, they would probably be more cautious as well.