Kendall and Kylie Jenner Pull T-Shirts Blamed For ‘Exploiting’ Rappers’ Deaths
The Kardashian-Jenner clan is being accused of cultural appropriation—again.
On Thursday, Voletta Wallace, mother of deceased hip-hop artist Notorious B.I.G., wrote a scathing Instagram post about Kendall and Kylie Jenner’s new line of t-shirts. The shirts, called the “Rap vs. Rock” collection, feature photos of the Jenner sisters superimposed over classic album covers and images of musical artists—including rappers Biggie and Tupac.
Wallace said that the Jenners had not reached out to her or the Wallace estate asking for permission to use her son’s likeness. “I have no idea why they feel they can exploit the deaths of 2pac and my Son Christopher to sell a t-shirt. This is disrespectful, disgusting, and exploitation at its worst!!”
View this post on Instagram
I am not sure who told @kyliejenner and @kendalljenner that they had the right to do this. The disrespect of these girls to not even reach out to me or anyone connected to the estate baffles me. I have no idea why they feel they can exploit the deaths of 2pac and my Son Christopher to sell a t-shirt. This is disrespectful , disgusting, and exploitation at its worst!!!
According to The Guardian, the Jenners were sent a cease-and-desist letter on Thursday, demanding the pair stop selling the shirts by 5pm on Friday. Kendall Jenner said in a note posted to Twitter Thursday that the shirts were “pulled from retail and all images have been removed.”
Subscribe to the Broadsheet, Fortune’s newsletter on powerful women.
Jenner apologized to those offended, saying it was “not our intention to disrespect these cultural icons in any way.”
This is the second time in recent history that the Jenner sister has been called out for cultural insensitivity. Back in April, she appeared in a Pepsi commercial that showed her handing a police office a can of the fizzy drink during a political demonstration. Many saw this as tone-deaf, considering the number of political activists that risked their lives during demonstrations. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.,’s daughter, Bernice King tweeted then: “If only Daddy would have known about the power of Pepsi.”
More recently, the Jenners’ half-sister, Kim Kardashian West, has accused of artificially darkening her skin in an ad for her new beauty line, KKW Beauty. She denies the charges, explaining in a New York Times interview: “I was really tan when we shot the images, and it might be that the contrast was off.”