Reality TV star Kylie Jenner is getting slammed by the disabled community, following the release of a photo spread featuring her in a wheelchair. The pictures are part of a feature story in Interview Magazine, where Jenner also appears as the December cover girl.
"People with disabilities are already seen as powerless, and this just reinforces that," says Emily Smith Beitiks, associate director of the Paul K. Longmore Institute on Disability in San Francisco. She speaks to CNN about the photos, and refers to them as “deeply disturbing.”
CNN also lists several negative reactions posted on social media. The photos were published on Interview magazine’s website on Monday, Nov. 30, and social media immediately became a venue for both positive and negative commentary. The disabled community were particularly offended by some photos of Jenner, where she poses on a wheelchair while wearing fetish clothing.
— Gregory Brown (@Whalewatchmeplz) December 1, 2015
In most of the photos, she wears revealing clothing and poses with a blank expression, making her look like a sex doll. In one of the photos, she even poses with her arms and legs outstretched and stiff like a doll, while a man appears to be carrying her by the waist.
Several issues are brought forward, including the inability of disabled models to get decent jobs. The objectification of women and the “devalued portrayal” of disabled individuals are also among the topics discussed in social media reactions.
The ridiculous @KylieJenner tries to profit off the misconception "wheelchair bound" means we're helpless...my wheelchair is my FREEDOM
— Dominick Evans (@dominickevans) December 1, 2015
Earlier this year, Kylie's older sister Khloe Kardashian, also received a wave of criticism, after she posted photos with a tiger cub. The pictures were taken during a trip to the Middle East, and animal rights activists were not pleased by Khloe's interaction with the animals that are being held in captivity.