There are arguably few (if any) women who are completely satisfied with their bodies; feminist vlogger Kat Lazo is no exception. Which is why it seems counterintuitive that she recently decided to stride confidently around her Queens, New York, neighborhood in the nude, and then post footage of the NSFW stroll online for the masses to see.
"I can say that there hasn't been a day where I'm not consciously fighting against the voices in my head from the pressures of society's beauty standards," Lazo writes in a blog post explaining her decision to film the video. "It's exhausting to constantly reject the lies that the media and sometimes even your own family feeds you. [...] I wanted to silence all the voices in my head so I could hear my own voice."
The video, entitled "Emotions of Weight," begins with a powerful statement millions of women — and men — across the country have thought at some point in their life: "I hate my body." Lazo proceeds to evaluate herself while common insults play in the background. But amid all this shaming, something amazing happens.
The words "Fuck it" float across the screen followed by, "I look good." Then the film of Lazo joyfully dancing around nude the streets starts to play. "I'm trying to send a message out and to myself not to really care that much and to spend more time with your body, loving your body than we do criticizing our body," Lazo states at the end of the video.
While Lazo admitted to Mic that making the video was "nerve-wracking," she hopes it will show women that the problem "isn't their bodies, the problem is a society dictating how women should look and act. Free yourselves of all of these constrictions, spend more time loving yourself than you do criticizing yourself."
This isn't the first time Lazo has taken to YouTube to combat injustice. Lazo told Mic that she started vlogging because her experiences have highlighted "how damaging the messages of the media could be to the development of young girls." This is also the reason she decided to launch the YouTube channel TheeKatsMeow with her friend Sara Waber, to encourage "young folks to challenge the media and question norms through a feminist lens."
So far, Lazo and Waber have used the channel to tackle issues ranging from street harassment to the representation of Latinas in the media to online feminism. While she notes that responses to her videos are "mixed," any criticism is negated by receiving messages "from young girls who say they've never seen some one who looks like me on their screen or that they didn't know Latinas could be proud feminists."
At the end of the day, Lazo told Mic, she wants to "challenge the media, question social norms and encourage young folks, particularly young women, to think critically about the world." And she'll stop at nothing — including nudity — to accomplish her goal.
h/t Pix 11