Kim K Met Look Is Praised While The Niqab is Banned: Is The West Contradicting Itself?

Kim K has been a controversial media persona since her rise to fame, in 2007, with the release of the infamous tape. Her Met Gala’s appearance on the 13th of September this year was no exception to her history of controversy. 

With a full-coverage black Balenciaga, Kim managed to steal the light in the highest couture night of the year. The controversial gown grabbed the attention of social media, which was flooded with funny memes. You can check a collection of these memes here and here

While social media was concerned with memes and jokes, the prestigious fashion critic platform concerned themselves with praising the bold appearance. 

Vogue, the most prestigious fashion blog worldwide, titled their critical article of the gown: “Kim K’s Met Gala’s Look Rewrote the Red Carpet’s Rules.”

In their high praise article, they said: “Kardashian’s stark black Balenciaga haute couture gown with matching mask and train was unlike anything Kardashian—or anyone else—has worn to the Met before. Completely obscuring her features and famous physique, the look gave the reality star something she hasn’t had in a long while: anonymity.”

So why is this “anonymity” something praise-worthy in the case of Kardashian, yet a source of shame for a Muslim woman?

It is apparent, that if Kim’s look stands for anything, it stands for the fact that full coverage can be a high fashion choice for a woman. So how is this any different to any other woman expressing herself through her clothes – be it too much or too little? It seems, that when this fashion choice comes from a Muslim woman, it terrorizes the west and provokes its politics, however, when placing a famous celebrity in the exact same clothing but in a different context, it somehow becomes acceptable.

Laws banning Kim K’s fashion choice

French senate voted to ban the Hijab for minors in a plea by the conservative right. That was the title of an article on NPR, that discussed the latest amendment passed by the French senate that would make it illegal for girls to wear the religious veil worn by Muslim women. Another amendment passed that would ban the body-covering swimsuit, known as the burqini. 

On the 7th of March, 2021, the Guardian published an article that started with: “Switzerland will follow France, Belgium, and Austria after narrowly voting in a referendum to ban women from wearing the burqa or niqab in public spaces.” 

Kim K is praised and a Muslim woman is degraded – What really marks the difference?

This contradiction in the western mentality that votes for banning Muslim women from wearing their religious clothing, while praising Kim K for covering up in the very same fashion patterns, reveals a very deep Islamophobia. 

If accepting a fashion choice is contextual to being a Muslim or not, seeing that one is regarded as fashionable, and the other is banned by law, there is a clear prejudice against being a Muslim, that we should not turn a blind eye to.

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