If you were outrageously, break-the-internet-level famous and your ex went on an unhinged, antisemitic public tirade, what would you do? If the first thought that popped into your head was quickly release a simple but sincere public statement saying my former partner’s views do not represent my own, you clearly need to spend some time boning up on the teachings of Kris Jenner.
The correct answer, judging from Kim Kardashian’s response to the controversy surrounding her ex-husband Kanye West (who now goes by Ye), is to say nothing for 18 days, then have dinner with Ivanka Trump, whose family was targeted in Ye’s tirade.
On Sunday night, October 23, Kim and Ivanka spent three hours dining at the Polo Lounge at the Beverly Hills Hotel. The world learned about this momentous meal from a TMZ post the following morning, which framed it as “old friends back together.” Could the pair have decided to catch up out of the blue? I suppose so. The celebrity-gossip site notes that Ivanka and Kim were “involved in the same circles growing up” and met at the White House several times during Donald Trump’s administration. And since both women are entrepreneurs with October birthdays, TMZ speculates that the dinner could have been “a simple business meeting or a birthday bash for one of the 2.”
But the TMZ post includes a telling clue from an anonymous source who happens to know all about the sensitive topics discussed at this private two-person dinner:
An insider at the restaurant tells us at one point, Kim shared how deeply concerned she’s been about Kanye’s recent anti-Semitic statements, and the fact she’s worried about her kids hearing what he’s said — especially given the fact they have Jewish cousins.
If this was just a PR stunt, Ivanka was the perfect partner. By dining with Kim, Ivanka (who famously converted to Judaism when she married Jared Kushner) signaled that she does not hold Kim responsible for Ye’s antisemitic remarks, which have led multiple brands to cut ties with the artist — most recently, Adidas and Gap. Plus it shows that she and her family bear Kim no ill will, although, as People explains, Ye attacked the Kushners on Instagram earlier this month:
Much of the comments centered on a since-deleted Instagram post in which West wrote, “F— JOSH KUSHNER,” slamming the younger Kushner for investing in his ex-wife Kim Kardashian’s underwear line SKIMS (an investment that was made by Kushner’s company Thrive Capital before the two announced their public breakup).
West added a message about Josh’s older brother, writing: “JARED WAS HOLDING TRUMP BACK.”
“After talking to them and really sitting with Jared and sitting with Josh and finding out other pieces of information, I was like, wow, these guys might’ve really been holding Trump back and being very much a handler [during the administration],” West said. “They love to just look at me or look at Trump like we’re so crazy and that they’re the businessmen.”
West added that the Kushners “weren’t serving my boy Trump the way we could have, because, you know, Trump wanted nothing but the best for this country.”
Ye has not gone after Ivanka specifically and actually proclaimed, at the end of his social media rant, “IVANKA IS FIRE,” but Parler accidentally revealed her private email address to hundreds of people when it announced that Ye was buying the site.
The Kivanka summit came as Kim was facing increasing pressure to speak out after a hate group hung a banner over a Los Angeles highway overpass on Saturday that read “Honk if you know Kanye is right about the Jews.” (Many social-media users have insisted that Kim shouldn’t be asked to answer for remarks made by her ex, who has been public about his struggles with bipolar disorder.)
For those not fluent in celebrity PR messaging, Kim rejected antisemitism more clearly in a social-media post on Monday, though she did not name Ye.
Does all this seem like a rather convoluted way of denouncing hate speech? Yes, but I know better than to question the ultimate momager’s methods.
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