Kim Kardashian Opens Up About Backlash to Her Response Over Balenciaga’s Controversial Campaign – Hollywood Reporter

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The business mogul said people “heard what they wanted to hear” after she denounced the luxury fashion brand’s holiday campaigns that showed children with teddy bear bags dressed in what appeared to be bondage gear.
By Carly Thomas
Associate Editor
Kim Kardashian is opening up about the backlash that surrounded her response to the controversial Balenciaga ad campaign. 
In an episode of the Angie Martinez IRL Podcast, which was released Monday, Kardashian spoke frankly about criticism she faced for her comments addressing the fashion brand’s holiday campaigns that featured children holding teddy bear bags dressed in what looked like bondage gear. 
“Even with the Balenciaga thing, it was like, everyone was like, ‘Why aren’t you speaking out? Why aren’t you speaking out?’” the Kardashians star said. “And I’m like, wait, I’m not in this campaign. I don’t know what’s happening. Let me like take a minute to research this and then as soon as I saw what everyone was seeing on the internet and the reality of the situation, I completely spoke out and gave my thoughts on child porn and completely denounced it.” 

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But Kardashian said people were still not happy with her, saying, “Because I didn’t say, ‘Fuck you, Balenciaga,’ that’s it, people got mad at that. So, it’s like they’re mad if I don’t speak out, they’re mad if I do speak out and if I don’t cancel [the brand].” 
The business mogul and media personality, who is a brand ambassador for the luxury fashion house, initially called out Balenciaga for its campaigns, saying in part, “I am currently re-evaluating my relationship with the brand, basing it off their willingness to accept accountability for something that should have never happened to begin with — & the actions I am expecting to see them take to protect children.” 
The Keeping Up With the Kardashians star continued to tell Martinez that “you definitely can’t win” in these types of situations “unless they heard what they wanted to hear.” 
“You know, when you just don’t want to be a part of the narrative, but you’re brought in,” Kardashian added. “But then I have to take responsibility and say OK, people look at me as the face of this so let me speak out. I just always want to do the right thing and you always have to just do what feels right.” 
In November, Balenciaga pulled the ads from online for its Spring 2023 collaboration with Adidas following the backlash and released a statement saying the Kering-owned French fashion brand “strongly condemns child abuse” and did not intend to “include it in our narrative.” 

Days after the campaign came under fire, Demna, the brand’s creative director, posted on his Instagram, personally apologizing for the images. 
The fashion company also initially filed a $25 million lawsuit against set designer Nicholas Des Jardi and the production company that handled the campaign, North Six. But Balenciaga’s president and CEO Cedric Charbit later said the company was no longer pursuing litigation. 
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