Kim Kardashian posted an apology on her Instagram today after receiving backlash for defending fellow makeup entrepreneur Jeffree Star from accusations of racism. Confused? Let's unpack it.
In the video, posted August 15, Kardashian opens by explaining that she shouldn't have "defended a situation that [she] didn't know enough about." She then goes on to discuss how she felt naive, and how she's realized that she doesn't have "the right" to speak on issues of racism. She specifically adds that she prefers seeing "positivity" on her timeline, which encouraged her to ask her fans to "get over" Star's past allegations of racism. "I’m not going against my fans in any way, I just was saying lets get the negativity off my timeline. But you know I’m sorry," she explains in the camera.
The video stems from controversy that erupted yesterday over her KKW Beauty contour kits. Jeffree Star, who is no stranger to beauty world drama, said one of Kim's new powder contour kits "looks like chalk." Fighting words if we've ever heard them. Of course, this is not the first time Jeffree Star has openly criticized KKW Beauty products.
Umm... Kim what is going on with those new swatches?? ? Looks like chalk ? pic.twitter.com/yCTZg2UhZu— Jeffree Star (@JeffreeStar) August 14, 2017
Kim's fans immediately struck back at Star by bringing up his past accusations of racism and misogyny. The receipts of Star's past remarks are long, and include a skit he created several years ago that depicts him in Blackface using racist and transphobic slurs. In June 2017, Star spoke to Allure about his past use of racial epithets and apologized for them. "I said those horrible things to everyone to get a reaction. I hate the 'r-word.' I think it’s so far from who I am but I’ve said things that are racist to women of color and other people so I get it," he told the magazine.
Instead of defending her product, or listening to her fans, Kim instead made the questionable choice to defend Star. She took to her Snapchat and her Instagram stories to post a long message to her fans, saying, among other things, that "I see you being so petty bringing up things in his past where he was you know, negative, but he's also apologized for those things...I know better than anyone that I hate when people bring up my past or mistakes I've made in the past, so let him live."
Predictably, Kim's fans were not having it. She received intense backlash over social media for her comments, which many felt trivialized Star's offensive actions and words. Kim apologized, and while we feel that she should have been more initially tactful when engaging with a known-hot topic like Jeffree Star, we appreciate that she took the time to issue a heartfelt apology. You can view her full apology below.