I hear what you're saying and agree in the sense that women are generally held to higher levels of scrutiny, but I don't think it's fair to write this off as that in this case.

George Clooney and the other aforementioned male celebs *should* be held accountable. But the Clooney example, which you cite multiple times, is a venture that was formed in 2013. I'm not saying that makes it okay, but I am saying that public dialogue and collective consensus (if we can even call it that) around what constitutes cultural appropriation has changed a lot since then; that was a time when there was still very little concern about chief hats at Coachella, only a few years after Robert Downy Jr. did blackface in blockbuster hit "Tropic Thunder" and the killing of Trayvon Martin "introduced" many people to the existence of racism in America for the first time.

Yes, Nick Jonas's tequila came out in 2019, more recent, but still before the Uprisings this past summer. And he's also a twat who deserves to be held accountable as well. Ultimately, the wrongdoings of some male celebrities don't make the same, more recent wrongdoing of a female celebrity acceptable or okay.

The Uprisings are actually an extremely significant aspect of why Jenner's foray into the tequila business is particularly cringey; you alluded to her absolutely appalling coopting of Black Lives Matter protests to sell Pepsi's a while back (which she clearly still doesn't understand as appropriative), as well as her and the other Kardashian's continued appropriation of ethnic hairstyles and clothing. Why, after being pushed to the brink of the most intense and widespread race riots this country has seen since the Civil Rights Movement, shouldn't a celebrity as influential as Kendall be held accountable?

Of course embracing something from other cultures is beautiful. But this is not appreciation, it is appropriation, periodt. She claimed that she had been working for four years to find the best tequila that exists; first of all, it takes 8-9 years for an agave plant to reach maturity--meaning, even if she did oversee the cultivation of this crop (doubtful), that they are using diffusers and chemicals to prematurely extract the sugars from the crop in order to meet the demand of massive/celebrity tequila operations, undermining an entire ecosystem that has existed for 500 years, and encouraging the kind of mass agricultural exploitation a la Monsanto that has devastated land and farmers in America. Second of all, she is capitalizing on the cheap labor of people in and around Jalisco, Mexico to make an easy profit. Third, she had a photo of herself drinking tequila with an ice cube, which is absolutely not a traditional way that tequila is consumed (fine, each have their own preferences, I don't even like tequila, but if you're going to appropriate a beverage, at least honor and respect some of the traditions of how it's consumed in your big PR reveal).

Kendall Jenner is using Mexican labor and traditions and stamping her name on it for capital gain. There are innumerable small batch distilleries that support Mexican people and the local economy that don't revolve around a random white girl saying she likes a traditional element of their culture and believes she can do it better. This is why, according to the definition that you provided of cultural appropriation, Jenner absolutely is disrespecting and refusing to acknowledge its origin and value in her predatory capitalization of the product. Maybe she does just really love and appreciate good tequila; maybe she just really loves and appreciates Pepsi too. It doesn't absolve her of the consistency with which she performs deep and harmful cultural appropriation in order to boost her capital, social and otherwise.

Presumably if there was a percentage of profits going back to support the people and land in Jalisco, she would've communicated that because it's good for business, which is all the Kardashians care about and is all they're good it.

I like a lot of your other writing and how inclusive so much of it is and was sad when I read the paragraph about how "You're Probably Just a Little Jealous." As if Jenner being "stunning" (by a very specific Western beauty standard that generally requires a lot of surgical intervention), rich and having hot friends, she is both beyond reproach (without the foundations being "jealousy") and inherently "good" or at least aspirational. Not everyone aspires to it. Maybe it does seem obnoxious and uncool, but there are many people, including Chicanx people and Mexicans themselves, who are concerned and disenchanted with how the United States has exploited and continues to exploit Mexico. One testament to this is the fact that Americans continue to gleefully vacation in Mexico, heavily perpetuating the crushing spread of COVID in a country far less resourced than our own to deal with the fallout (yes, there's a corrupt government that has kept borders open. That's not poor people's faults in Mexico).

Of course that "Just because a lot of what the Kardashian/Jenner family does is problematic, appropriating and fetishizing," but no one is saying that everything they do is bad. People--especially Mexican/Chicanx people-- are saying that it's harmful and appropriative and fetishistic for the reasons described above. And that is reason to hold them accountable. We don't need to see how the business pans out. We already can see it for what it is: an opportunistic influencer using someone's culture, yet again, for personal gain. Frankly, whether or not she appreciates it is irrelevant--if she really appreciated it, she could just as easily visibly co-develop and share profits and recognition with Mexicans or Chicanx people in America so as to make it seem less of "her" explicit innovation.

Lastly, part of the reason why she and the Kardashian's in general are held to higher standards is because of their unparalleled influence. Nick Jonas has 30 million Instagram followers. Kendall Jenner has 154 million followers--reaching demographics and audiences that Nick Jonas couldn't dream of. She is one of the most influential people who exist in the world today, so to say that holding her to a higher standard of accountability merely because she is a woman--especially when that accountability is in regards to one of many flagrant acts of racism she has committed in order to further her already inconceivably large amount of wealth--is to essentially weaponize white feminism to justify the harmful acts of a white woman against people of color and sensationalize anyone criticizing her as sexist, which is plainly untrue.

Queer non-binary (they/she) Jewish writer who loves puzzles, cats and meditation. Student of Ayurveda.