Cardi B is under fire regarding the theme of a recent photo shoot for a digital magazine cover. The “I Like It” rapper posed for the November cover of Footwear News as the Hindu goddess Durga with her new Reebok shoe, the Cardi B Club C sneaker. According to Britannica, Durga is usually “depicted riding a lion and with 8 or 10 arms, each holding the special weapon of one of the gods, who gave them to her for her battle against the buffalo demon.” In Cardi B’s photo, she is depicted as Durga with eight arms and is holding the red Club C sneaker.
After the release of the photo, she began to receive backlash on social media. On Twitter, one person explained why the photo was disrespectful.
People are saying Cardi B is paying homage to our Hindu goddess Durga. So as a Hindu I want to say that:
1-Wearing a shoe in a temple is prohibited
2-Durga maa is not to be used as an aesthetic
3-Durga maa is NEVER depicted bare bodied
4-THIS. IS. NOT. HOMAGE. IT’S. DISRESPECT.
Another Twitter user blasted the former Love & Hip Hop star saying: “You’re f****** kidding this is so disrespectful to Hindu culture?? how do celebrities not understand that using other people’s culture to promote their brand is wrong on so many levels!? On top of that they’re comparing CARDI B to a Hindu goddess… worms for brains.”
Someone else then shamed her for using a goddess from their religion for promotion.
Footwear News has since removed the post where they shared the November cover of Cardi B depicted as Durga. In the caption of the now-deleted post, they said the theme was chosen because Durga’s “symbols of protection and inner strength resonate as much in modern times as they have through the centuries” and “like Durga, Cardi B is a dominant female voice at a critical time.”
Cardi B Has Apologized to the Hindu Community
After she learned of the backlash she was receiving, Cardi B took to Instagram to apologize for offending the Hindu community with the photoshoot. In her apology, she explained why she agreed to pose as Durga and didn’t know that it would be seen as disrespectful.
In her Instagram story she said:
The creatives [told] me, ‘You’re gonna represent a goddess,’ that she represents strength, femininity and liberation and that’s something that I love and that I’m all about and I thought that was dope. But if people feel that I’m offending their culture or their religion, I want to say I’m sorry. That was not my intent. I do not like disrespecting nobody’s religions religion. I wouldn’t like for anybody to disrespect my religion when people dress [up] as the Virgin Mary and Jesus as long as they do it in a beautiful, graceful way and a respectful way.
In a text over the video she wrote: “Sorry guys. I didn’t mean to offend or disrespect anybody’s culture. I cant change the [past] but Ill be more cautious for the future.”