From what I remember, Kim Kardashian was the first – ?? – major celebrity to offer personalized emojis. When I say “offer,” I mean buy. You could buy Kim’s Kimojis for a reasonable price, and that’s what millions of people did. Kim literally made millions of dollars off her Kimojis, and not only that, she started a trend. Many celebrities offer personalized emoji packages now. Some of the Kimojis are actually really cute and funny – I especially enjoy the Cryface Kimoji, which is a spectacular piece of self-aware branding. The Kimojis took off, and now Kim offers actual products branded with the Kimojis on her online store.
So, Kim offered some special Kimoji products in honor of 4/20 yesterday. The idea was supposed to be pot-themed Kimojis and products, but then something happened. Kim posted this:
— Kim Kardashian West (@KimKardashian) April 20, 2017
You can see the product being sold here. It’s an $18 veladora, a candle used for spiritual purposes amongst Catholics, specifically Mexican and Latin-American Catholics. The candles usually have the images of the Virgin Mary, Jesus or various saints on the side. You light the candles to pray. So… is Kim making fun of Catholics? Is she making fun of Mexican Catholics? Is she comparing herself to the Virgin Mary? Is she about to get hammered by a bunch of Catholic groups? Probably.
I’m honestly trying to figure out how offensive some people will find this. I come from a long line of Hindus and I honestly don’t think we would get offended about our iconography being co-opted and appropriated by Kim Kardashian. Like, if Kim wanted to sell products where she was representing Shiva, I think most Hindus would just shrug?
Photos courtesy of Fame/Flynet.