First Family Moves From White House to Magazine Cover?!
Cosmopolitan Magazine recently set social media on fire with their November cover featuring “America’s First Family,” The Kardashians. Okay, I could barely write that with a straight face. Before I jump into my own opinions, let’s cover some facts.
Last night Cosmo posted their cover online to express the buzz surrounding their 50th year and the Kardashian/Jenner women coming together for a group photo for the first time in four years. This is the post the magazine released on their site to preview the upcoming issue:
“No one could have predicted the Kardashians’ and Jenners’ success. But when you spend time with them, what resonates is the family unit. There are so many things about them that are glamorous, crazy, and unlike our lives, but the sense of family is universal. They love and stand by one another no matter what,” says Ryan Seacrest, the executive producer of Keeping Up With the Kardashians and the family’s self-described “big brother” in Cosmo‘s November 2015 issue, which celebrates the magazine’s 50th birthday. “Their unvarnished candor reveals how close they really are. What’s more, they present acceptance. You look at Bruce and now Caitlyn — you see the power of a family to come together when it would be so easy to fall apart. There’s comfort in viewing that steadfastness of love.”
This cover is the ladies’ first all together since 2011; stay tuned to see even more covers with individual photos, stories from the sisters, behind-the-scenes videos, and more!
In new-world fashion, people took to social media to voice their opinions on the cover. Some people who are loyal supporters of the Kardashian/Jenner Klan praised Cosmo for highlighting their favorite family, however, many of the responses put out were ones of disdain about the usage of the phrase “America’s First Family.”
Any mention of the America’s First Family usually places this image into one’s mind; President Obama and his family. Several people on Twitter and publications such as The Grio and Huffington Post Black Voices expressed that they felt Cosmo’s poor word choice was a direct violation of the First Family. Even those who may not agree with Obama as a President voiced that they too believe that the phrase indirectly compares the two families and ultimately diminishes the value of the Obamas. According to USAToday, this is the statement they received from Cosmo’s spokeswoman:
“We are teasing!” said the emailed statement from Cosmo spokeswoman Lauren Demitry. “Though who knows, if Kanye runs for president then we may be soothsayers.
“The Kardashians and Jenners have more digital followers than any other family, more than 350 million and counting,’ the statement continued. “They are a huge cultural phenomenon. What we do know is there is nothing like the cover of a magazine to provoke a national conversation.”
Okay, now that we have covered the basics of the story, ready for my opinion? To start off let me begin with this, Cosmo, I did not find your tease stimulating at all. I do understand if you were trying to make a “pun” or label them with a title that signifies the records they have broken digitally, but that was not the label to rest upon. Why not have said “First Family to Break Media Records” or “First Family To Consistently Remain in the Public Eye Even Though They Are Adding Nothing to the Growth of Society?” But then again, I guess those titles are not “provoking” enough for a national conversation.
Although in the past I have enjoyed a few articles from Cosmo and their SnapChat social circle, I have my own reservations about some of their practices regarding writing about cultural diversity, but that is a discussion for another day. I say that to say seeing something like this on their cover was not shocking for me per se, but I do think it was done for one of two reasons: (1) They wanted to spark up controversy to get people to read their 50th Anniversary Issue or (2) They were indirectly trying to suggest that America’s First Family should be one that attracts likes and social media debate. And to dig the hole deeper adding that remark about Kanye was not the way to save face Ms. Demitry. Either way, my head has been shaking since I first saw the post and it is still shaking now.
Regardless of the intentions of how the phrase was “meant to be used,” the only First Family of America in my eyes is The Obama Family, and the first Black family at that!