My advice for Kim Kardashian: Think twice before you tell America’s Covid-weary women to work harder
If you have a famous last name, or notable parents, it is both a blessing and a burden.
It is a burden because everyone assumes every single thing in your life is handed to you.
You are not extended ownership or agency over your life’s accomplishments (or failures for that matter) because everything is always credited to your privileged upbringing – despite the fact that my father hasn’t been living for over three years.
It is also a favorite pastime of the lowest common denominator on the internet to impersonate me by screaming ‘my father’ over and over again.
It is hurtful, but as the old saying goes, there’s no crying in baseball.
MCCAIN: ‘Kim is an incredibly smart woman, I would never say different. But she should really know better’
More obviously, being born into privilege is a blessing.
Doors are opened for you, opportunities are handed to you, and overall more attention is given to you as you start your career (particularly if it is the same career path as your parents).
If you don’t believe me feel free to ask Maude Apatow, Zoe Kravitz, Sofia Coppola, Anderson Cooper, Jenna Bush, Dakota Johnson, Kia Gerber, Jaden Smith, Brooklyn Beckham… the list goes on and on.
And yet, famous parent cannot guarantee the success of their children.
There are quite a few notable children of celebrities who have struggled publicly and not been able to reconcile some of the challenges that of all the extra attention.
Of course, hard work and talent play a big role.
Kim and her sisters are featured on the cover of Variety and they gave an interview during their photo shoot. Kim was asked for business advice that she would give to other women. She said ‘I have the best advice for women in business: Get your f-ing ass up and work. It seems like nobody wants to work these days.’
All of that being said, it is important to recognize your privilege when it exists.
The unique experience of having successful or famous parent breeds specific and special opportunities not available to the vast majority of people, and particularly to those born into poverty.
That’s why the internet is going crazy over Kim Kardashians latest comments about hard work.
Kim and her sisters are featured on the cover of Variety and they gave an interview during their photo shoot.
Kim was asked for business advice that she would give to other women.
She said ‘I have the best advice for women in business: Get your f-ing ass up and work. It seems like nobody wants to work these days.’
Her sister Kourtney, chimed in saying ‘that is so true.’
Kris Jenner, Kim, Khloé, and Kourtney Kardashian, pictured, front the latest cover of Variety
Kourtney is infamous for saying on their reality show that ‘work isn’t her top priority.’
In fact, Kourtney’s apparent laziness made a big plot line of a few seasons of the show, as her sisters made clear how listless they found her to be.
Simply put, they should all know better.
One of the most damaging reactions to the remarks came from a one-time Kardashian employee, Jessica DeFino.
She tweeted, ‘I was an editor on the Kardashian apps in 2015 in LA, worked days nights & weekends, could only afford groceries from the 99 Cents Only Store, called out ‘sick’ more than once bc I couldn’t put gas in my car to get to the office, and was reprimanded for freelancing on the side.’
Ouch… that burns.
Kim’s comment comes off aggressive and completely tone-deaf in these complicated post-Covid times that we are living in.
The pandemic, lockdowns and everything that went along with them directly impacted women in the workplace, because many were pulled out of their professions to carry the load of caregiving responsibilities at home.
Kim was born to a famous father. Her mother was close friends with celebrities as Kim was growing up.
Her step-father is a wealthy former Olympian, and one of her first jobs was as Paris Hilton’s assistant.
She didn’t pull herself up by her bootstraps — as they say.
Kim has been afforded more opportunities than the average person can ever dream of.
While she may work hard, less than 99.9% percent of the world’s population will ever be given the opportunities that Kim has had.
Kim’s comments also play into the archaic belief that some women’s careers stall because of their actions.
This dated thinking assumes that these women aren’t working hard or ‘leaning in enough’ as Sheryl Sandberg argues in her book ‘Lean In,’ which has been justifiably torn apart since it’s release for it’s unrealistic and extremely narrow standard for success that only works for privileged white women.
Lastly, Kim’s remarks ignore that inflation is skyrocketing, gas prices are hitting historic highs, society has been savaged by Covid and the world appears to be on the verge of a possible WWIII.
All of these factors impact everyone’s success.
At the end of 2021, 61% of Americans were living paycheck to paycheck, according to a recent survey.
Kim (pictured with ex Kanye West in August 2016) seemed to anticipate comments form people who think she hasn’t earned her fortune. ‘Who gives a f***,’ she said. ‘We focus on the positive. We work our a**es off. If that’s what you think, then sorry’
Millions of Americans get up at the crack of dawn, work multiple jobs and have incredible work ethic, but are unable to pull themselves out of their socioeconomic station.
It is an absolute tragedy and one of the great shames of American life. One that many politicians and leaders have been unsuccessfully trying to solve for decades.
Kim is an incredibly smart woman, I would never say different. But she should really know better.
It is also worth noting that Kim was sued last year for allegedly violating labor laws.
The complaint was filed by seven former members of Kim’s gardening and maintenance staff, who claimed they were denied meal breaks and overtime pay, as well as subjected to other mistreatments.
Kim’s legal team has said that the workers were hired through a third-party vendor and she is not responsible for any agreements they made.
To be fair, I should also note that Kim took a lead role campaigning for criminal justice reform and has done much more than other celebrities to right some of society’s wrong.
But is this latest remark Kim’s ‘Let them eat cake’ moment?
Time will tell how much damage comes from it.
Knowing the Kardashians I am sure another scandal will pop up in the next fifteen minutes to distract us all from this but Kim should be wary of saying such cavalier and insensitive things.
The past few years have savaged us as citizens, it has particularly savaged us as women.
There is a cultural reckoning underway because the vast disparity between the uber wealthy (who were shielded from Covid) and the rest of America became blatantly and egregiously obvious.
I would advise Kim to try and continue growing and morphing with the times.
I would encourage her to be humble and self-aware enough to realize that she is the embodiment of the one percent of the one percent.
You didn’t simply get there from hard work alone.
Trust me, as someone who has benefitted from opportunities — given to me in the same way they were given to Kim — I know what I am talking about.