It seems as though Sports Illustrated model, and rumored New York Jets quarterback Tim Tebow girlfriend Kate Upton’s First Amendment rights are constantly being challenged.
First, there was the fashion photographer Terry Richardson’s vlog series clip where Upton danced to Rej3ctz’s “Cat Daddy” song – prompting YouTube to censor, then reinstall (and apologize) the supposedly Not Safe for Work (NSFW) video.
Now, the Catholic League has targeted Upton for a scene in the 2012 film The Three Stooges in which the model appears poolside with Larry, Curly and Moe – the film’s main characters – wearing what it looks like a Catholic nun’s headpiece and a long rosary over a revealing bikini.
Bill Donohue, president of the Catholic League, the country’s largest group advocating for the defense of religious and civil rights, slammed Upton’s “nun bikini” outfit as well as Larry David’s character – a nun whose name is Sister Mary-Mengele (after the infamous Nazi Josef Mengele). Donohue also took issue with a Conan O’Brien’s subsequent comment who said nuns’ outfits were the reason why they were “mean.”
But both Conan’s comments as well as the “nun-kini” depiction presented in the film should not offend Catholics. They are artistic expressions and as such are protected by the First Amendment. And, while the Nazi reference is distasteful (and could probably be banned in other countries, including Germany), it is also protected as a form of free speech in the U.S.
The Catholic church should know this well, since they recently protested President Obama’s health care law which would have made them provide contraception to its employees. The action produced an uproar of religious leaders crying foul about the overreaching federal government violating their religious freedom by mandating something they were morally opposed to.
Now, that the tables have turned, they should not get offended by Kate Utpton's nun-kini and recognize the free speech rights of the producers of The Three Stooges.