Photo: REX USA/Beverly News/Rex.
Kim Kardashian posted on her blog on Monday that she no longer supports the boycott of the Beverly Hills Hotel. Over the past several months, celebrities including Ellen Degeneres and Jay Leno have joined picketers in protesting the owner of the hotel, Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah, who recently instituted repressive new laws that target (among other things) adultery, sodomy, and abortion, in his native country of Brunei. He's enacted a strict interpretation of Sharia law, which allows stoning to death as a punishment. Though Kardashian decried the Sultan's system, she's said a boycott of the hotel is harming the employees, rather than Bolkiah himself.
"For a sultan that has 20 billion dollars, this loss of business doesn’t even make a dent in his fortunes. But the hotel staff are being negatively affected every day with the boycott that has gone on for weeks now…We shouldn’t punish the amazing hard-working people who have been so good to us for years!" Kardashian wrote.
Though the hotel is reportedly compensating its workers for tips lost during the boycott, there's no way to accurately predict the extra money an employee would receive from their clientele. "There must be other ways to express our views without punishing the workers, some who I know personally have families at home and depend on the city’s business and tips to survive," Kardashian argued. In her opinion, depriving the Sultan of business won't affect his worth. And, if that's what the activists are really trying to do, then they're going about it the wrong way.
Kardashian makes a valid point in noting this boycott alone does little — if anything — to provoke the change many would like to see. But, there's also a difference between pointing out a problem and suggesting an alternative solution. Now that the star has shown an interest in Brunei, we're looking forward to seeing how she'll contribute to this issue in the future. You can read her full letter here.