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Women's Issues

#CelebGate Includes Child Porn, Further Proving It’s A Sex Crime, Not A Scandal

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 CelebGate Includes Child Porn  Further Proving It s A Sex Crime  Not A Scandal 149844879 1409748395 24 240 79 215 280x186 jpgI wouldn’t have thought it possible, but the story about leaked celebrity nudes just got even worse. Gymnast McKayla Maroney and MTV actress Liz Lee, whose private photos were stolen and leaked to the Internet, were underage at the time at the time those pictures were taken. That makes nude photos of them child pornography, and anyone who downloaded them is currently in possession of illegal material. Does that mean we can finally stop referring to this story as #CelebGate and start calling it what it really is? I’m thinking “a sex crime” but I’m willing to settle for #TheInternetIsMadeOfAssholesGate.

Certain subreddits are currently freaking out, including the classily-titled “TheFappening, as they try to figure out several important facts, such as: What, if any, are the consequences are for them for downloading child porn? Will they get to keep their precious nude-posting subreddit? Is there some kind of loophole that would let them keep the nudes they have already downloaded? Oh, and, of course, if there’s another leak of these same celebrities at some later date, would those nudes be okay to keep and slaver over? And while they panic, they have several complaints, too. For example: it’s not fair that they have to work so hard to remove child porn from their browser cache or download history! The law just doesn’t understand the Internet! And it’s so crazy that someone could go to jail just for a little thing like viewing stolen nude pictures of a seventeen-year-old, when she’s not being charged with producing child porn!

 CelebGate Includes Child Porn  Further Proving It s A Sex Crime  Not A Scandal reddit cp 2 jpg  CelebGate Includes Child Porn  Further Proving It s A Sex Crime  Not A Scandal reddit cp 6 jpg  CelebGate Includes Child Porn  Further Proving It s A Sex Crime  Not A Scandal reddit cp 3 jpgInterestingly, something that never seems to come up is the suggestion that all this could have been avoided by not downloading stolen nudes of any woman, let alone underage women. For all that this brigade slings victim-blaming at the women targeted by this leak, they don’t seem to consider that they might be somehow responsible for this issue.Funny how a woman who doesn’t want her private pictures out on the Internet just shouldn’t have taken any in the first place, but somehow, it’s not really on the radar that a man who could go to jail for possession of child porn just shouldn’t have downloaded those images in the first place.

This is not a story about women who screwed up somehow by taking personal photos. This is a story about a sex crime, and not just for those who were underage at the time the pictures were taken. This isn’t a matter of them “having it out there” to be found: if you break into someone’s home and take their stuff, you don’t blame them for having stuff in the first place. And this isn’t a matter of these women owing us their sexuality by being employed based on their attractiveness: you don’t get to show up to Stephen King’s house and read his diary because he makes his living writing. This is a matter of some anonymous Internet sexual predators violating these women’s privacy, and if you’re more worried about what’s on your hard drive than the invasion of their lives, you deserve whatever is coming to you.

(Photo: Ronald Martinez/Getty; screen captures: Reddit)

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