I’ve been enjoying the backlash towards Cosmopolitan magazine for putting the Kardashian and Jenner women on the cover, and calling them the “First Family”. Out of all the comments I’ve read from people who disapprove, there was one that really stood out. The commenter chose to summarize his view of the family by saying they consisted of the following: a woman who made a sex tape, a woman with 3 illegitimate kids, and a woman that turned her basketball star hubby into a coke addict. The younger ones were described as one who is being groomed to be Hollywood’s next train wreck that is most recently known for dating a rapper while she was under aged, and the other that has been able to become a model off the family name. Next ,you have the son who is deeply depressed and embarrassed of the family, and then the dad who underwent a sex change to become a woman. Lastly, you have the mother who has found a way to market them in every venue possible. Yes, it’s a lot to take in but America can’t seem to get enough of this family. There was a time, about two years ago when the show was getting boring. The Khloe and Kourtney spin offs just weren’t doing it, and I thought they were going to disappear. But, then Lamar Odom became an addict, and Kanye West joined the family so it got interesting again.
America, at one time did it’s best to heavily portray television shows like Leave it to Beaver, Donna Reed, and Different Strokes as the images they wanted this country to be known for. However, when I think of movies that best represent America, Malcolm X, The God Father, New Jack City, and Roots are what come to mind. You see, your perception of America really all depends on which America you live in. And, the “Keeping up with the Kardashians” television show also comes to mind. It is a constant reminder of what actions some can get away with as compared to others, and that if you don’t mind selling it, whatever it is, some people will buy it.
So why is everyone in an uproar about them being called the “First Family” of America? Everyone knows that entertainment and entertainers are what we value here. It’s not Teachers, it’s not Nurses, it’s not Fire Fighters, and it’s not Police Officers. We also know that this country predominantly cares about keeping the rich, rich and the poor, poor. We cater to the desires of the wealthy. This country became the “greatest nation in the free world” through slave labor, stealing property, drugs, and breaking prohibition laws for alcohol. Why we insist on pretending anything different is beyond me?
Americans pick and choose when we want to uphold lofty ideals of the American family. However, when it’s time to vote we choose to forgo tradition. When it’s time to report a crime, we haven’t seen anything. When it’s time to talk about what is on our television screens, and how music influences our children negatively we are quiet.
And by the way, the President’s family, isn’t America’s “First Family”. They are the President and his family, where the Patriarch and Matriarch are also regarded with other titles such as “Commander in Chief” and “First Lady”. The President is a figure head for the Presidency- a position. The Obama’s do not represent America, more so what you can become in spite of it.
It’s true, the Kardashians are famous for nothing, and it’s not their fault that we love them for it. Their extreme highs and lows hasn’t diminished the way we view them. Maybe their shallow, self- absorbed, unaccountable behavior makes us feel better about ourselves? And, their lives of fame and fortune, with no real consequences is one that we wish we had.
But, hold on Kardashian fanatics, the best might be yet to come, especially if Kanye West runs for President in 2020. They really know how to keep us watching…
Rachel Bryant Lundy