ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN The Huntington News, January 30, 2015
By Sara Tucker, News Staff
In October, comedian and bestselling author Chelsea Handler took to Instagram with a topless picture of herself on horseback – a photo that spoofed one of Russian President Vladimir Putin from 2009, also shirtless atop a horse. Wednesday, Handler came back with another post, this one of her astride a camel in Israel with pasties of the Israeli flag concealing her nipples.
The original photo on the horse, captioned “Anything a man can do, a woman has the right to do better. #kremlin” was promptly removed by Instagram for violating the company’s “community guidelines,” according to a message the company sent Handler. She wasted no time posting a screenshot of Instagram’s response, as well as an angry tweet calling Instagram out for being “sexist.”
She then reposted the original photo, this time with the caption, “If [I]nstagram takes this down again, you’re saying Vladimir Putin Has more [first] amendment rights than me. Talk to your bosses.” Instagram again removed the photo.
All was quiet was Handler for about a month, until she posted a photo of her naked backside superimposed next to Kim Kardashian’s viral cover shoot for Paper magazine.
“Can you believe more than [two a**es] can fit on the same screen? Guess which one’s real. Your move, [Instagram],” she said, alluding to the removal of her previous photo. The photo, which contains no frontal nudity, was left as she posted it, still viewable on her Instagram account.
Many thought Handler was finished with her assault on Instagram after the photo was not removed, but, to the dismay of some and the delight of others, the comedian, who is currently in Israel, posted yet another topless photo of herself on Wednesday.
This time, however, she opted for Israeli flag pasties to cover her nipples, thereby making the photo Insta-acceptable.
“A Muslim allowed a topless Jew to sit on his camel,” she captioned. “And we say we can’t live side by side? I say we try and we can and we will. And, you don’t even have to be topless. L’chaim.”
Handler is one of several celebrities, including Miley Cyrus, who have participated in the #freethenipple campaign, which aims to bring attention to the stigma around women’s breasts and their public display.
“Free the Nipple is a film, an equality movement and a mission to empower women across the world,” the group’s website says. “We stand against female oppression and censorship, both in the United States and around the globe.”
World peace via full frontal nudity? What could be better?