If you were not aware that Nicki Minaj is releasing a new single soon, you may be living under a rock. I’m sorry to be the one to tell you. The internet has been buzzing about it for some time now - partly due to the single’s cover art that Minaj posted to Instagram last Thursday.
The notoriously body-unfriendly app has (surprisingly) not taken it down; instead, the photo has been receiving backlash from both insignificant internet haters and reputable news sources. Even The Guardian referred to the photo as “too racy for it’s own good.”
Understandably, Minaj has been left to ponder why her own beautiful body is being subjected to slut-shaming and labels like “unacceptable”. Oh, you might be thinking, it’s probably because she’s wearing a thong and showing off her butt. (Which, by the way, is nothing to shame a woman for - especially if she’s making the choice to wear the clothes on her own.) OK - so let’s say that is “the reason” why Minaj’s ass is making headlines.
Nicki is too wise to bend under the BS of the media, and she knows that “the reason” is totally discriminatory and not at all legit. So, she took to Instagram to point out exactly why people who were “shocked” at her “racy” pic have some rethinking to do.
In a quick and effective stream of posts, Minaj pulled images of white supermodels in nothing but their thong bikini bottoms aiming their butts and smiling faces toward the camera - NOT unlike Minaj’s photo. Then she posted her own cover art, with the caption “UNACCEPTABLE.” It’s easy to see just how racially prejudiced (and body-shaming) the media is, masked under the guise of policing Nicki for being “too racy” and “too sexy.”
If Katy Perry had cover art that showed off her ass in the same exact outfit and the same exact pose as Minaj, would it receive the same backlash? In my opinion, it probably would be categorized as “sexy” and/or “wild”, whereas Nicki, as a woman of color choosing to reveal parts of her body, faces harsher criticism.
It’s really no secret that Minaj’s butt is beautiful and larger than the average butt. Should this stop her from flaunting it in whatever way she wants? No. So why is this a big deal? Because whitewashed standards of beauty (which the entire media world operates under) finds anything that doesn't conform to be “unacceptable” and “overwhelming.” American media specifically loves small butts on a small white models and refuses to accept anything other than that.
This is just one example of a larger issue that affects women everywhere which desperately needs attention called to it - just like Minaj has done.
Women of all colors and sizes should be able to flaunt whatever part of their body they want in whatever way they want. If they like feeling sexy? Sorry, mainstream media. Not your problem. Goodbye. Nicki Minaj has no time for you and your hate today.
All images via Nicki Minaj's Instagram account, courtesy of Sports Illustrated.