real life

Today is the day that the Kardashians became a force for good.

The world just keeps getting stranger.

If we needed any evidence that things have reached peak Strange, it’s today.

And I am not talking about a transgender woman’s debut. Nothing strange about that.

No, what’s strange is that today is the day when the extended Kardsashian family created a more tolerant, kinder world.

Once, it was thought that the rampant success of Keeping Up With The Kardashians – the reality show about a blended family of six children and their parents living a life of obscene luxury in Calabasas, California – surely signalled the End Of Times.

The Culture ripped at its hair as an entire generation fell under the spell of Kim, Khloe, Kourtney and their conspicuous consumption, their sex tapes, their shopping sprees and their relentless, unending quest for fame and money, money, money.

They were a Sign Of Everything Wrong with our Selfie-obsessed, material world.

But not today.

caitlyn jenner
Jenner’s Vanity Fair cover, shot by Annie Leibovitz. Image via Vanity Fair.

Before Caitlyn Jenner, there was Bruce Jenner – who played the often grumpy, certainly “henpecked” husband of matriarch and momager Kris Jenner, dad to six kids of his own and stepdad to four more. The words most often spoken about Bruce by fans of the franchise? ‘Poor Bruce.’ So overshadowed by the women. So booooooring by their standards.

But not today.

Who could have foreseen that Bruce would become Caitlyn, 2015’s icon of acceptance. And that the world’s media would be flooded with stories about the lessons we can learn from Kardashian Family Values.

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Because Caitlyn, it is not overstating it to say, will save lives.

Behind the scenes of the Vanity Fair shoot: The 7 questions you have for Caitlyn Jenner – answered.

“People are transgender. Caitlyn’s picture being seen by millions of people around the world today is communicating and affirming transgender stories,” Sally Goldner, Executive Director of Transgender Victoria tells Mamamia.

“Yes. she can save lives. People hear her story and know where to go for help and reassurance. I would agree absolutely that her story can change lives.”

Back in the ‘Keeping Up with the Kardashians’ days.

And that’s not where The Kardashians 2.0 end.

Kim Kardashian, once ridiculed for being famous for doing nothing, is now a multi-gazillionaire self-made woman, a model stepdaughter, a champion of the trans community, AND a poster-child for mixed race families.

Love is the courage to live the truest, best version of yourself. Bruce is love. I love you Bruce. #ProudDaughter

A photo posted by Kim Kardashian West (@kimkardashian) on

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“I feel a responsibility,” says Kim, “as a mother, a public figure, a human being, to do what I can to make sure that not only my child, but all children, don’t have to grow up in a world where they are judged by the colour of their skin, or their gender, or their sexual orientation.

“I want my daughter growing up in a world where love for one another is the most important thing.”

Right on, Kim.

Kim talks to Today Show about Bruce’s interview with Dianne Sawyer (post continues after video):

Yes, a lot of crocodiles died for handbags along the way to Kardashian world-domination. Yes, some sportsmen had their hearts broken and bad habits exposed, and some tiny children may have been dressed in designer clothing that cost more than your car, but come on, you can’t fight it any more. These people are changing the world. Get on board.

Let’s examine the evidence of the social justice work the Kardashian/Jenners have championed into the mainstream:

1. Caitlyn is a transgender woman in her 60s, changing minds one Vanity Fair cover at a time.

2. Kim and Kanye head up the world’s most high profile mixed-race family, fighting prejudice one super-cute selfie at a time.

3. Kim, Khloe and Kourtney have changed the way young women feel about their bodies. You’re not a stick-thin supermodel? Screw it, you can break the Internet with your “big” bum, one hyper-arty nude shoot at a time.

4. Raising awareness of infertility. Both Khloe and Kim have shown that even the super-rich can struggle to get pregnant, one televised gyno appointment at a time.

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5.  The power of the blended family. Screw Christian Family Values. This mob might be the most disfunctional on the planet, but dammit if they don’t love each other and back each other, one televised Family Therapy Session at a time.

Caitlyn’s whole family showed their support on social media (post continues after gallery).

Of course, Caitlyn’s ex Kris Jenner must be sobbing a little bit into her red wine tonight, as she watches one of the finest media campaigns of our age perfectly executed without her (an external company Rogers & Cowan is handling Caitlyn’s press, rather than the family firm, Jenner Communications). But she must also be proud and more than a little stunned that a process that started as the family money maker is actually becoming a Culture Changer.

Because today, the world stands with Caitlyn Jenner. Yes, she is a hyper-privileged, wealthy white woman living a life of luxury unimaginable to many (the average male-to-female transition in Australia will leave you with around $15,000 out of pocket expenses, according to Transgender Victoria), but her story has the opportunity to affect more tangible change to the way the world treats transgender people than a thousand worthy PSAs.

And it culminates, of course, in an eight-part, reality TV Transition Special, coming to a screen near you in July.

Yes, Caitlyn is only just getting started.

Has Caitlyn Jenner’s transition changed your view of the Kardashian clan?

More on Caitlyn’s evolution can be found here:

The mistake you don’t want to make when talking about Caitlyn Jenner today.

The 5 most touching moments from the Bruce Jenner family special.

An Aussie trans icon on the ‘Bruce Jenner Effect’.