Welcome to 2018, where reality stars dominate American politics
It's 2018, very little makes sense any more, and you no longer need a political background to influence major political decisions; you just need to have a ton of followers.
Kim Kardashian is reportedly on her way to the White House today, May 30, after months of behind-the-scenes lobbying with those close to Trump. The reality TV show queen will be welcomed today to discuss prison reform – particularly, the case of Alice Marie Johnson in Alabama.
Johnson was was convicted of money laundering and drug conspiracy charges and was sentenced to life without parole in 1997, despite it being her first offence. She’s spent almost 21 years behind bars.
Last year, Kim tweeted about Johnson's case, and it seems she hasn’t let the issue drop since then. According to reports, Kim has been talking with Trump's daughter Ivanka and her husband Jared Kushner, who is one of Trump’s senior advisors, about the 62-year-old’s case. Secret Service agents will reportedly greet the star and her attorney before she sits down with President Donald Trump in the Oval Office to ask for Johnson to be pardoned.
This is not the first time Kim has flexed her 60 million follower-fame for political reasons. Earlier this week, she took to Twitter to express disappointment at the news circulating about a man named Matthew Charles. He was released from prison early in 2016 after a sentence reduction, but is being sent back to jail to finish his sentence after a court told him his initial release was due to an admin error.
Kim wrote: "This man is sentenced to 35 yrs for selling drugs. He serves over 21 yrs, is released, finds a job, new relationship, starts a new life, & now is being sent back for another 10 yrs because the original release was an error. This man has completely rehabilitated himself. So sad". Irrespective of whether or not Kim K has a background in politics, at least she’s using her influence for good – these sentences are undoubtedly unjust.
Of course, the irony isn’t lost that Kim will be travelling to the White House to sit down with a president who is also, lest we forget, a reality star. The Kardashian-Wests have edged ever closer to Trump this year. After announcing that he wanted to run for office in 2020, Kanye spoke publicly about his support for Donald Trump, and met him in 2016. Earlier this year, he photographed himself in a MAGA hat, called Trump his brother and told the world that they both have "dragon energy". Perhaps we shouldn't be surprised that Kim is now heading to the Oval Office: Politics no longer harnesses the power of pop culture – it is pop culture.
Update, May 31: Well, it happened – and the starkly surreal resulting press shot has already become a kind of particularly bleak meme.
“So, here’s the pitch. It’s a fish out of water story but get this, he’s the president and we have Donald Trump play him. And then, here’s the kicker we have Kim Kardashian play his sassy but still incompetent Chief of staff. It’s like Veep meets The Purge.” pic.twitter.com/3EO9V87vAL— Molly Jong-Fast (@MollyJongFast) May 30, 2018