I am fascinated by the intense downward spiral our culture has taken in the last ten years. Whether it’s the normalization of drug use, abortion, porn, de facto liberalism prevalent in the media and politics, or just generally trashy behavior, you really can’t look anywhere and not be bombarded with the fact that we’re not in Kansas anymore, Toto.
When it comes to this downward spiral, I always wonder: was it cultural/media/political de facto liberalism and the push of the secular progressive, statist, socially liberal agenda (the Chicken) or was the public already naturally arriving at this devolution (the Egg)?
There’s no better example of this paradox than the Curious Case of Kanye West and the Kardashians.
The Kardashians have been bombarding our senses since the O.J. Simpson trial, and I’ve said before it’s because of O.J. we have the mess of the Kardashians. Some might say they are simply a product of the culture; that it’s the public’s hunger for vapid, artificial, obviously surgically enhanced voyeurism that spawned them.
Others say we suffer the Kardashians because of the singular ambition of Kris Jenner and her brood of fame whores who shoved their way to the bottom of the popular culture heap: that, in essence, THEY helped devolve the culture.
Regardless, the world now is bombarded with this family on a daily basis. They have millions of followers and fans. Their every moves are photographed and documented on social media. They seem not so much a by-product of the culture but instead moving the culture in hilariously disturbing ways.
The youngest Kardashian, Kylie Jenner (who’s not really a Kardashian, but a Jenner, before Bruce became Caitlyn), is, to me, the great tragedy of the family.
Looking at pictures of Kylie Jenner from a few years ago is the ultimate “Harpo, who dis woman?” experience. The young woman has completely morphed into some conglomerate of Kim Kardashian’s latest face (which has gone through many surgical transformations of its own) and every Photoshopped and filtered Instagram photo you’ve ever seen.
It’s not that she “grew into” her features: no. She, unlike Kim and Kourtney (Khloe has long been acknowledged to be the love child of Kris Jenner and “someone else”) has no Kardashian in her at all. How then, did she somehow take on the more exotic, Armenian features of her older sisters? It’s obvious she had a head to toe surgical makeover.
Again: chicken or the egg.
Did Kylie, seeing the “fame” her older sisters (especially Kim) had, make her beg her unsuspecting, supportive mother Kris to let her totally smash and change her face and body into something unrecognizable in order to compete with the standard of beauty exemplified by Kim?
Or did Kris, seeing her youngest daughter as undesirably “plain”, set out to groom another cash cow by transforming Kylie into a second Kim—complete with a rapper boyfriend with questionable character?
Sadly, it was probably a combination of both motivators. A 16 or 17-year-old girl, unhappy with her face in comparison to her sisters’, sets off to destroy her own. Like the tragic Michael Jackson, years down the line she will forget what she used to look like. She will accept as fact her face as it is now—or what it will become. The upkeep of her face and body implants will become routine. If she neglects the maintenance, they both will show it.
Kylie seems to be poised to become Kim 2.0 and that’s just how her family wants it: another fame whore to add to the coterie of fame whores. After all, Kim is getting older, and there’s more money to be made!
Enter the hilariously delusional Kanye West.
Kanye West’s Chicken or the Egg: even if he had never met Kim Kardashian, Kanye West was on his way to becoming the crazy self-proclaimed “genius” he is today. Joining forces with the equally social-climbing Kardashians only accelerated his delusion.
My question is: are the style mavens at Vogue, Harper’s Bazaar, Allure, New York Fashion Week and others simply punking us all? Or have they bought into the unmitigated garbage Kanye West is selling?
You see, for a “genius” like Kanye West, making a couple of good–but mostly irritatingly bad—songs just isn’t enough. Not only does he think he can be President of the United States, but also a shoe and clothing designer. So, for the past four *seasons* Kanye—under the intensely annoying moniker “Yeezy”—has been thrusting his outlandishly expensive brand of tennis shoes, earth toned body suits, slip dresses, and over-sized sweatshirts onto the Coolest Kids at School.
His latest show highlights his “multi-racial only” models. Yes, once again, liberals who proclaim superiority over us all turn out to be the most racist.
The models had to line up silently and stand in the heat like lithe, beautiful Stonehenge statues for over two hours before His Highness started the show, give off a slumpy, straight-armed air of bored indifference, and try not to faint from dehydration.
A couple of the models actually DID faint. Finally, the captive audience started giving them water—realizing that this little annoying piece of performance art had gone on for too long.
When the show finally started, it was an epic trainwreck—everyone was hot and annoyed, and his models toppled over on the runway because their shoes didn’t fit.
Way to go, Genius.
But Kanye pretends to be this creative mastermind—and most of me believes he truly buys what he’s selling. And so do the fashion-forward progressives who slobber all over themselves in covering this mess.
So who’s punking who? Is it chicken or the egg?
Do the media, and that includes the “fashion world”, actually believe Kanye West and his extended family are somehow fashion and cultural vanguards who reflect the changing face of popular culture? Or are they simply leading the gullible down their invented path and mocking everything along the way—all while they get richer?
It’s The Emperor’s New Clothes on a grand, social scale.
There’s a big part of me who wishes the Kardashian/West clan one day comes forward with the admission that they have been conducting a massive social experiment on gullibility—that they are actually all brilliant actors simply pretending to be these horrific, insipid, awful people, and now that the experiment has ended, they can reveal themselves to be thoughtful humans shining the light of truth onto our devolving culture and challenging us to change.
But mostly, I think this surgically enhanced, dysfunctional, vacuous, sex-tape having, oversharing family is simply a mirror reflecting an image of society back onto itself.
So yes—we are both Chicken and Egg.