First things first: Rob Kardashian’s posting his ex, Blac Chyna’s nudes is illegal by California state law. So, beyond any and all moral or ethical issues this situation is causing, what he did was past petty — it was against the law.
Any human being, no matter their occupation, their personality, or their failings as a person, should maintain the right to control over, at the very least, who gets to see them naked, when, how, and why. The reason it’s illegal to share this type of image in the first place is because it violates that person’s private rights, and even worse, has potential to cause them some type of personal harm.
In fact, according to Carrie Goldberg, attorney and founder of Internet abuse and sexual consent firm C. A. Goldberg, PLLC, “This is sort of the classic, quintessential revenge porn. Rob has made the work of a prosecutor or a victim’s attorney quite easy (by going) so far as to even post about the very motive.”
In 2013, revenge porn was made a crime under the California Penal Code. According to the state’s law, it is a criminal misdemeanor to intentionally distribute identifiable images of another person’s intimate body parts “under circumstances in which the persons agree or understand that the image shall remain private, the person distributing the image knows or should know that distribution of the image will cause serious emotional distress, and the person depicted suffers that distress.”
The potential sentence is up to 6 months jail time and a substantial financial penalty — and that’s before the possibility of a civil suit, wherein the victim can sue for a potentially larger, more damaging payday.
So, that’s number one on “The List of Reasons That Posting Your Ex’s Private Pictures On Social Media Is An Incredibly Sh*tty And Dumb Thing To Do.”
However, there are already defenders and detractors alike coming out of the woodwork to decry Blac Chyna’s behavior, vilifying her as a gold-digging, cheating, manipulative, wastrel, only using her relationship with the sole male Kardashian kid to get back at her own cheating ex.
Let’s address this: It is entirely possible — likely, even, based on what we’ve been told about the situation — that Blac Chyna is every bit as much a scumbag as Rob’s posts make her out to be.
With that being said, nothing she is accused of gives him the right to violate her privacy or post her personal pictures in a public forum the way he did. It doesn’t matter if her previous job involved showing parts of her body to strangers for money, if there are already intimate pictures floating around the various sewers of the internet, or if she was ever in the business of exchanging money for sex, as he accused her of in one of his posts.
And yes, if the roles were reversed, it would be every bit as bad and damaging; it would remain a horrible and hurtful act. It’s not a matter of “feminism” or “social justice,” it’s about treating a human being like a human being, so Rob’s defenders should probably can the act, and acknowledge that what he did is a violation.
Two wrongs don’t make a right. Rob is certainly entitled to his feelings. By all means, he should be hurt; most of us would be. By all accounts, he spent a pretty significant amount of money to keep Chyna happy; he recounts spending over $100K on plastic surgery so she could fake a post-pregnancy snapback to sell tummy teas and fitness propaganda on social media. She cheated on him, and according to T.I., she “worked him” in order to get revenge on Tyga. It’s fair to say that she is taking advantage of him, and that’s awful stuff, there’s no denying it. She, if nothing else, violated his trust.
Which is why he should have absolutely thought twice about retaliating. Knowing exactly how shameful and terribly it feels to have someone he cared about abuse his trust, he would know that revenge only makes the other person feel worse. It sure won’t make him feel any better, especially if he now has to deal with criminal charges on top of the emotional distress she’s caused him.
There have been instances where individuals (both men and women) lose their jobs, their homes, see substantial damage to their family and social lives and suffer intense, cruel trolling from both the internet and people they know or may not know in real life. It’s threatening, it’s scary, it’s hurtful, it’s demeaning, and literally no one on earth would enjoy or want to go through it themselves, so inflicting it on someone else is the worst type of hypocrisy.
The lesson here is “keep your private business private.” It may be harder to do for a celebrity whose every move is watched by paparazzi and whose life has literally been turned into entertainment for millions, but there are certainly plenty of aspects of their public lives they have control over — social media being the first and foremost. Clearly, Rob’s having a hard time dealing with the emotional trauma that he’s been put through by Blac Chyna, but Instagram isn’t the place to work through that — therapy is.