Let's be honest, the Kardashians and the Jenners are no strangers to the appropriation of any of the world's cultures. It seems that their favorite cultural appropriation is sourced in Black Culture. From their "boxer braids" (aka corn-rows) and full-lip injections, to their dreadlocks and Bantu knots, the Kardashians and Jenners have a long list of wrongfully credited "trends."
It seems, with their lifeless imagination, that they may finally get exposed for their undeserved fame.
The sisters have been deemed trendsetters when they should have been deemed professional thieves of cultures and ideas for profit. Last week, Khloe Kardashian was called out by Destiney of Dbleudazzled Designs for this very reason.
In Khloe's case, she ordered one of everything, including custom pieces from the Dbleudazzled Designs site, and used them her "Good American" lookbook. In the lookbook, the designs were passed on as Khloe's own without the knowledge of the original designer. Hence, Destiney was at first hesitant to call out the uninspired crook, but took to Twitter to call Khloe out for her snake-like ways.
In similar fashion, Kylie Jenner has shamelessly copied the designs of The PluggedNYC Store, which is owned by a designer name Tizita. You guessed it: Tizita is a Black woman. After being gifted pieces by the brand, Kylie Jenner has 'coincidentally' created a similar line. Kylie has posted selfies wearing the brand before so it's no wonder that Kylie became overly inspired by the PluggedNYC brand.
Meanwhile, while Tizita ensures that she didn't create camo two-pieces, she sure did revive the look from the 90's. Now, Kylie's decision to replicate the brand using her star power is essentially taking money out of Tizita's pockets.
Black women know that the Kardashians have been problematic for quite some time. However, the audacity - shall we say 'caucasity' - of both Kylie and Khloe makes me wonder how ordinary stealing someone's concepts is for this family.
These women must imagine inspiration as a completely different concept than most people, but then again, they obviously have no imagination to begin with. Thus, the lack of independent artistry remains.
Can someone tell me why the Kardashian/Jenner Party isn't over?
This story is poorly covered by the media as if it's worthless. While such Kardashian appropriation is not a new concept, this direct replication of an already-existing brand of clothing by a star should be an issue that receives widespread attention. The lack of such points to the low value that has been placed on Black perspectives and challenges in modern society.
Are Black women, and our contributions to American culture, not worthy of recognition? Not only have the Kardashians snubbed the issues at hand, but so has the media.
When will the time come where Black people receive credit for their abilities to remain trailblazers? Black women continue to get the backhand when we are the very paradigm in which society bases its inspiration. Black girl magic is not a myth, but the world continues to neglect our incantation. Destiney knows that.
I didnt speak up for attention or $. Im trying to be a voice for indie designers who are stolen from because its the right thing to do.-- destiney bleu (@destineybleu) June 3, 2017
Wanting to appreciate the culture is one thing, but straight-up appropriating culture is another. Imitation is not always flattery. Claiming that such cultural transactions are beneficial denies the false veneer multi-culturalism that continues to perpetuate social hierarchies, when Black people are the keepers and creators of such popular culture.