For the Last Time, the Kardashian Curse Isn't Real

After Kanye West was hospitalized, many claimed he had fallen victim to the "Kardashian Curse." It's time to debunk that.

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Complex Original

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We humans are logical beings. We yearn for tidy explanations and find comfort in meaning. The world we live in, on the other hand, is defined by randomness and chaos. Faced with this devastating truth—that not everything happens for a reason, and that we are therefore not in control—we ascribe meaning where there is none and devise shields of rationality to protect ourselves from the harshness of mortality. We turn to spirituality; we bemoan the presence of curses.

But not only do curses shield us from considering death or chaos, they shield us—the "victims" of these curses—from any semblance of responsibility. It wasn't years of mismanagement, a poor fielding play by a first baseman, or a meatball by Tim Wakefield that kept the Red Sox from winning a World Series for 86 years—it was a trade made in 1919. Further west, it was the Curse of the Billy Goat that kept the Cubs from winning the NLCS in 2003—not the fact that a team couldn't recover from an uncaught foul ball up three with two outs in the eighth inning. Curses don't exist in sports; they don't exist anywhere. Not even in Calabasas, despite what you may have heard:

Just a moment of silence for all the men the Kardashian curse has taken a toll of. 🤐🤐🤐🤐🤐

The Kardashian Curse refers to the idea that any man who engages in a relationship with one of the Kardashians is doomed. The family is a poison that drives men insane and into ruin, the curse goes. (Some people stylize it the "Kardashian Kurse," bekause they are klever.) Bruce Jenner, Scott Disick, Kris Humphries, Lamar Odom, and now Kanye West, who was hospitalized for a psychiatric evaluation last night, have all fallen prey to the Kardashian Curse.

First of all, I'm not even going to get into how offensive it is to claim Caitlyn Jenner was forced into transitioning. It's a disgusting argument that disrespects Jenner's lifelong struggle with gender identity and the entire trans population, that treats transitioning as an illness and a negative outcome that should be avoided. So we're done here, okay?

As for the rest—just like any other curse—the Kardashian Curse absolves Disick, Humphries, Odom, and West of all responsibility and unfairly places blame onto Kim, Kourtney, and Khloe Kardashian. Scott Disick's battle with substance abuse predates Kardashian mania. Lamar Odom has lived an extremely difficult life. He had a tough childhood and a heroin-addicted father. While at the University of Rhode Island, Odom would turn off his phone and disappear from campus for days. In 2006, his six-month-old son died from sudden infant death syndrome. Kanye West has always been a manic, unhinged personality—his bouts with depression and struggle following the death of his mother have been well-documented for years, primarilyby Kanyehimself. And Kris Humphries? Please don't pretend he was ever anything more than an OK basketball player. Besides, he averaged the most points of his career the season after he and Kim Kardashian divorced.

To place belief in a Kardashian Curse is to ignore every other factor influencing these men. It's a borderline sexist presumption that insinuates that men are not agents in their own lives, but that the women surrounding them wholly are. We might as well strap boulders to Kim, Kourtney, and Khloe and see if they float

"But there's a pattern here! Those Kardashians are celebrity-crazed sirens who poke everyone around them into insanity!" you say. And you know what? You're probably right (even if you're conveniently forgetting to mention other, seemingly unharmed Kardashian boyfriends like Reggie Bush, James Harden, and French Montana). The blinding spotlight that comes with the Kardashian family probably didn't help Scott or Lamar or Kanye. But don't pretend like that spotlight was some secret to any of these people, like the environment they were marrying into wasn't clearly stated, like some bomb pussy tricked them. The Kardashians didn't change any of these men—more likely, the men these three already were led them to be attracted to the lifestyle the Kardashians offered. Nonetheless, they're consenting adults who made conscious decisions. And they should be held to the same standard we all are, instead of absolved out of some deep-seated irrational distaste for the Kardashians.

We're smarter (and better) than this. The people of Salem couldn't diagnose smallpox, Bill Buckner fucked the Red Sox, the Cubs choked, and no—there isn't a Kardashian Curse.

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