Last night, I spoke before a group of gay journalism students at Columbia and was surprised to find that one of their top concerns was that Kim Kardashian brings down our culture!
I was amazed that serious Ivy League students even devote brain cells to thinking about the Kardashian clan.
But I was also taken aback that they didn’t realize that 15-minute “famous for the sake of being famous” stars are nothing new and nothing all that dangerous.
There have always been socialites, party people, Zsa Zsa Gabors, camera grabbers, Warhol Superstars, and “It girls” who seize the spotlight without destroying the world.
They have always been fun guilty pleasures, cartoon characters to dish and dis while tracking their every move and dissecting their every offense by the proverbial watercooler.
And they don’t end up decimating mankind, it turns out.
They’re simply a momentary distraction from the real achievers — the Meryl Streeps and Kate Winslets and so on who are artists seeking validation through their creative work, not their crass desperation.
The 15-minute folks are a palate cleanser, providing candy-colored, larger-than-life antics to gag to, giving us a glamorous common enemy to envy and resent so we can spend the rest of the day admiring our icons.
Besides, Kim does do something — she has a TV show, and as a sidebar she merchandises every aspect of her life with a scary willingness to self-exploit en route to world domination.
But don’t worry, she won’t achieve that. She’ll be a footnote of a footnote if you just hold your breath and wait.