Kim Kardashian, a live adult human woman, has cellulite, as evidenced in recent photos of Kardashian wearing a bikini while on vacation in Mexico. In this fact, Kardashian joins nearly 90 percent of all women who, regardless of diet or physical fitness, have cellulite, according to Scientific American. So why are we talking about an utterly ordinary facet of Kardashian’s body? Well, because Piers Morgan has a problem with it.
Morgan, who was once the wishful second coming of Simon Cowell but has recently spent his days trolling women for all manner of behavior deemed unacceptable by him, unleashed his thoughts on Kardashian’s body on Good Morning Britain. Shockingly, the discussion started innocuously enough, with Morgan saying, per Marie Claire, “The great thing about these pics is she’s not flawless like every other woman, like every other man, none of us is flawless. Present company excluded.” Alas, the cordial sentiments did not last long, when Morgan’s cohost Susanna Reid spoke positively of the un-retouched realness of the photos, saying, “I think we should celebrate cellulite, it’s a fact of life for, I’d say, 90 percent of women.” Morgan immediately hopped off board, objecting to the idea that one “celebrate” a feature outside of the realm of conventional physical beauty. “Why would we celebrate it? We put up with it, tolerate it, but not accept it,” Morgan demanded, comparing such an embrace to the idea of Morgan embracing the fact that he’s less attractive than his younger self.
As for why an alternative option — having no compulsion to form a value judgment about somebody else’s body in the first place — wasn’t on the table, Morgan then proceeded to explain why Kardashian is “fair game.” “My thoughts are she’s just launched her new emoji of her backside next to an ashtray which she’s called ‘ass tray,’ so I think her posterior is fair game,” Morgan argued.
The British personality later took to Twitter to stand firm by his point of view, insisting that cellulite is absolutely not something to be positively discussed. He insisted, “it’s a flaw. Like my double chin. Definitely nothing to ‘celebrate.'”
Insofar as Morgan almost certainly enjoys baiting the outrage his frequently sexist comments produce, it’s almost fruitless to explain exactly why his words are so misguided. After all, this isn’t even the first time Morgan has offered provocative criticism of Kardashian and her body specifically.
But, like most bad logic, Morgan’s thoughts are troubling because they distort and bury what is somewhere a kernel of truth. In this case, there is a valid movement for body neutrality, an idea that acknowledges that the language of body positivity, in which women are often told to embrace any manner of features they wish were different, can sometimes burden a woman with as much pressure as to what to think about her body as conventional beauty demands. But that freedom for women to feel however they want is not what Morgan is after, as his insistence that cellulite is a “flaw” is as controlling as any kind of demand to celebrate it.
What Morgan gets wrong is the idea that he gets to be the arbiter of this distinction, that he gets to decide for women what they should hate about their own bodies. In that free speech is a fundamental right, Morgan is of course technically within bounds to call discussing Kardashian’s body “fair game,” but he is willfully ignorant of the difference between what’s “fair” and what’s decent. Morgan can say whatever garbage he wants, but he should stop talking about women’s bodies, because at no point has anyone asked.
Oh, and as for Kardashian’s handling of the unnecessary conversation? Flawless.
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