I did it. I am embarrassed to admit it, but I did: I searched for the celebrity nudes stolen by a hacker over the weekend. It was an almost unconscious reaction, like pulling away when touching something hot — only the opposite. There are celebrity nudes? Rush toward them.
It wasn’t sexual; I wasn’t looking to get turned on. I just wanted to know. What were these photos? How “bad” were they? As a woman in the world, I am all too aware of the perpetual possibility of being shamed or violated myself. It’s hard not to take such newsmaking events — regardless of whether they happen to a celebrity — as a warning. Besides, unless I searched for the images, I wouldn’t know whether they showed Ariana Grande delicately wrapped in a bed sheet or spinning sequined nipple tassels while juggling baby monkeys. My curiosity and concern, I told myself, shouted down the other voices in my head — the ones saying that these photos were stolen, that it was a violation of their privacy, that these women were being victim-blamed and slut-shamed for having taken these private photos in the first place. Sisterly solidarity, right? No — basic humanity.