Kim, on behalf of all men and women of colour, you do not speak on behalf of us. So, where shall we begin?
Jeffree Star is all too often at the centre of race and controversy, in fact, so much so that the topic is almost exhausted at this point. Last year, the makeup mogul was outed for his racial slurs in a series of videos where he made many incredibly degrading comments about people of colour, particularly women.
Now given his history of offensive comments, it’s time to address the problem at hand. It recently came to light that Kim Kardashian of the multi-million empire spoke out in defence of the Jeffree Star. Though her insensitive and fickle rant came about in the form of a makeup specific commentary, it still begs many questions. Before defending Jeffree, perhaps Kim should have conducted a little more research on his past racial slurs, the same slurs of an MUA essentially capitalizing from racism. Jeffree Star often used the N word “in the past,” to scold black men and women, and not only that, but it was caught on camera…
Despite his faux apologies on a seemingly and equally fake YouTube background with a solemn face and a play act of ‘I’m sorry for who I was‘, I for one refuse to believe that he’s sorry for those words. Mistakes they may have been, but it still my – and I assume many others – right not to accept it. Instead, I believe the apology came about as perhaps he was embarrassed that he’d been caught and outed by fans, many of whom so happened to be black. Though I often expect little from the Kardashian family, my own fascination with them aside, I would have hoped that Kim, who herself has not only a black husband but two children of mixed heritage (both of whom will be perceived as black throughout their lives), would not run to the defence of an openly racist celebrity. It simply boils down to the fact that once again, she put her foot in her mouth goading a barrage of think pieces, on why a number of white women and men feel as though they can accept apologies on behalf of black men and women. Simply put, we do not accept it.
But that, as you’ll soon realize is not the reason I was miffed. While Kim may have thought she was simply welcoming criticism of her new makeup swatches, she was actually contributing to a far bigger problem. While having her tatas contoured, as one does, she went far beyond her own makeup line and into the bigger problem at hand, racism. Kim, for some insane reason, thought that it was her place to apologize for Jeffree’s past racial slurs and once again, we. do. not. accept. it. Simply put, only POC can speak on POC’s life experiences. Women who are not of colour, however, do not have the right to tell us what we should and should not forget. Though this is Kim specific, this is not specific to Kim, it is a universal problem and I’m here to put out a public service announcement that it’s not even a little bit okay.
True, we may be moving forward in society, but racism is still rampant and no we do not have to get over it. At the end of the day, Jeffree Star is at the top of his field and essentially, capitalizing off of filthy racism. Why should we have to accept his shoddy apology, simply because Kim of the Kardashian empire says we should “forget it”. At the end of the day, Jeffree made a number of horrid comments and not just in the context of those videos which have since been removed from the internet. In fact, his internal hate stretches to women of colour in YouTube. Yes, I am of course talking about his incessant dislike of Jackie Aina, who warns us on a daily basis that we should be wary of him. I wonder why…
Though, credit to Kim she did quickly backtrack from her earlier comments. Or, perhaps we should be crediting her fans, because this back-peddle, of course, came courtesy of those on the internet who informed her that her comments were not only insensitive but incredibly ignorant. Which only further begs the question, would she have viewed her comments as wrong had she not seen the inordinate amount of think pieces flooding the net? Sure, ignorance is bliss, but ignorance to this degree should not have to be tolerated simply because she is in the public eye. As a mother of biracial children, I would hope that she informs her children that they may face vogues of racism at some point in their lives. I urge her to at least educate herself on the facts before once again defending an individual who has nothing but hate in his heart for women like little North in the future.
Though she later apologised for her blind defence of his past comments, at this point claiming not to “know much about,” a situation, is probably enough reason to keep schtum.