In a perfect world, we would be ignoring Kendall Jenner's harmless nudity. And yet this is the type of story that quickly escalates into a trending topic.
Yesterday, the model and half-sister of the Kardashian clan posted an image on her Instagram feed from a fashion shoot with Australian photographer Russell James.
Her hair is wet and strewn across her face, her makeup has been intentionally underdone and her torso, including her nipples, appears visible through a webby knit top. Very little is left to the imagination.
"Can't wait for you guys to see the rest of the photos!" she writes in the photo's caption. Ah yes, the suspense of what she intends to show from the waist down is just too unbearable.
Part of the brouhaha stems from the fact that Jenner turned 18 less than three weeks ago.
And although it is not uncommon for young models to pose nude, online critics can't help but conflate her actions with those of her extended family. If one has spent some amount of time on the Internet, exhibitionism (nude or not) strikes as a public rite of passage among the Jenners and Kardashians. It's a deliberate attention seeking chess move whereby sex is used to strategically advance into the spotlight. Retreating goes against their raison d'être. Hence TMZ's take on the photo: "What took so long?"
Half-sis Khloe quickly came to Kendall's defense on Twitter with three supportive posts, one encouraging her to "Model your booty off and show them how its [sic] done!!!" followed by the a two-part tweet that read, "I love seeing all of these haters comments. Naomi, Kate, Cindy. ... All fabulous models. ... Models and photographers take beautiful artistic images. And I don't hear you birds chirp then. Sit down and enjoy the view!" with the hashtag #sorrynotsorry.
Fair enough – although we're docking a point for the grammatical error.
And it is true that no one – least of all Jenner – needs to be apologizing. After all, her other half-sister Kim appeared even less covered up in Kanye West's newest video, Bound 2, that premiered after much anticipation on Ellen yesterday.
It's worth wondering, however, why people remain so fixated on this family. Seriously. Because otherwise, we are complicit in their actions. And they will keep delivering the checkmate every time.
Follow me on twitter: @amyverner