It has been 13 years since the Kardashians graced us with a leaked sex tape and one of the most influential reality TV shows of all time. In that time they have turned their small show into arguably the biggest lifestyle brand the world has ever seen.

Kris Jenner said in a roundtable interview with The Hollywood Reporter, that the reason their show has been on for so long and has done so well is because there is one person in their family that everyone can relate to. This is true, every member of the Kardashian clan has a very distinct personality and even though they come from unimaginable wealth they are still somehow relatable. 

For me, Khloé has always been the most relatable — from the way she bluntly talks about everything to the way she tries to act as a peacekeeper within her family. However, the most substantial thing that Khloé Kardashian has done, at least in her earlier years, was to give much needed representation to those who didn’t have an insanely perfect body like the rest of her sisters.

Throughout her many shows and episodes she depicted her struggle with weight loss and her love of working out. As someone who has struggled with their body image it was great to see the same thing represented on TV.

There was a certain power and strength about Khloé which is what made her such an icon. I mean you would have to be a pretty strong person to be continually referred to as “the fat sister” by the whole country. While that is a difficult thing to endure she didn’t let what the media said about her body keep her from loving herself and knowing her worth as a person. 

However, the level of airbrushing and photoshopping Khloé now uses on photos she posts on Instagram has increased exponentially. Her pictures are altered to the point beyond recognition. Everything about her is smaller, thinner and as perfect as can be.

And while I can understand why she would want to do this, I wish she would realize how important it would be for someone with a platform like hers to promote body positivity instead of perpetuating a culture that actively fights it.

While it is important to like what you see in the mirror you shouldn’t make people who don’t have half the resources at their disposal feel like they aren’t living up to a basic human standard of beauty. Like it or not the Kardashians are the gatekeepers of fashion and beauty in American society as well as globally.

If they could harness their platform to promote other body types they would be able to make much needed change in the world, rather than sending these mixed messages about what it means to truly be beautiful.

A new law that started in France but is gaining popularity among other European countries, is one that makes posting edited pictures illegal if they are not explicitly marked as retouched. This might seem extreme to some people, but the ways people are now editing photos is also extreme.

There are countless apps that help you shave off the parts of your body you don’t like and give yourself a six pack. It’s time we really took a look at what we are doing to pictures of ourselves and ask why we are even doing it in the first place.

This new kind of law or standard could help those who suffer from eating disorders and body dysmorphia. Many of these diseases begin with someone looking through magazines or Instagram and thinking that their body doesn’t look the same as the ones in the pictures.

Plus it could be so easy, I mean we already spend way too much time calculating what time of day gets you the most likes and what lighting you look best in. If this law could help anyone feel better about their own bodies then it is totally worth it because the consequences editing a photo can have on a person’s mental health is too serious.

The Kardashians just recently announced that the very show that has brought them their empire and their influence will be airing its final season in 2021. While this announcement has been  met with a mix of sadness and relief that their iron grip on media might be loosening, I don't think they will be going anywhere anytime soon. 

Yes, our time watching them beat each other up with purses while they consume comically large salads might be over. But they will always have a hand in shaping our culture. In the same vein that Paris Hilton has continued to set trend after trend once her time as a reality star came to an end. The Kardashian clan will continue to pervade all aspects of global culture. 

Much like everything else about the Kardashians, I wish they could be better as they have so much influence over us and our values. I think if we could all be honest about what we do to make ourselves look better both in photos and in real life we would all be happier. It’s a lose-lose game when we try to compete with computers, I mean their abs are hard as steel.

Spencer Brown is the managing editor. Follow him on Twitter at @Spencer_Brown_

Managing Editor

Major: Journalism / English I work for the Bulletin because I love hearing people's stories and being able to share them with our community.

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