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Kanye West criticized for ‘slavery is a choice’ remark and support for Trump

/ 05:21 PM May 09, 2018

Rapper and singer clash, with West stating Legend is “trying to manipulate his free thought.” Image: AFP/Jewel Samad

Kanye West had been the talk of social media lately, and not for good reasons, as many netizens and personalities have called him out for his TMZ interview last May 1.

In the clip that’s now circulating all over Twitter, West was found telling radio host “Charlamagne Tha God” (Lenard McKelvey in real life) that 400 years of slavery sounds like a choice.

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“When you hear about slavery for 400 years, for 400 years? That sounds like a choice. Like you was there for 400 years and it’s all of y’all?” West was found to be saying.

Meanwhile, in another clip, West was recorded inside the TMZ newsroom, asking its staff loudly, “Do you feel that I’m feeling, do you feel that I’m being free and thinking free?”

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Van Lathan, one of TMZ’s producer, finally got up from his seat and without mincing words, told West, “I actually don’t think you’re thinking anything. I think what you’re doing right now is actually the absence of thought and the reason why I feel like that is because, Kanye, you’re entitled to your opinion, you’re entitled to believe whatever you want, but there is fact and real-world, real-life consequence behind everything that you just said.”

“While you are making music and being an artist and living the life that you’ve earned by being a genius, the rest of us in society have to deal with these threats to our lives,” continued Lathan to a silent West.

“We have to deal with the marginalization that has come from the 400 years of slavery that you said, for our people, was a choice. Frankly, I’m disappointed, I’m appalled and, brother, I’m unbelievably hurt by the fact that you have morphed into something, to me, that’s not real,” he added.


Netizens have since called out West after the airing of the video.

“Black Eyed Peas” founder member will.i.am was one of those who took to Twitter to express his disappointment over West’s opinion:

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“@kanyewest #slavery vs #prisons. Reality: It’s not and never was by choice. The wickedness was done by force and strategic conditioning. And education deprivation is at the root. The fact that the USA builds prisons and not schools, is not our choice.”

American rapper Snoop Dogg also took to his Instagram page to react about West’s opinion, with a mocking video. In the video, Snoop Dogg was heard saying, “Man, it’s been a long day. I don’t think I’m gonna do slavery today… I think I’m gonna do half a day.”

View this post on Instagram

Choice ???

A post shared by snoopdogg (@snoopdogg) on

Just last month, West also came under fire after meeting President Donald Trump and praising him. Many people were up in arms about it, especially when West said he loved President Trump.

“You don’t have to agree with Trump but the mob can’t make me not love him,” West tweeted on April 25. “We are both dragon energy. He is my brother. I love everyone. I don’t agree with everything anyone does. That’s what makes us individuals. And we have the right to independent thought.”

This apparently did not sit well with American singer-songwriter John Legend, who reached out to West and told him to reconsider his alignment with Trump. This was done via text message, which West uploaded screenshots of.

“You’re way too powerful and influential to endorse who he is and what he stands for,” Legend wrote to West. “As you know, what you say really means something to your fans. They are loyal to you and respect your opinion. So many people who love you feel so betrayed right now because they know the harm that Trump’s policies cause, especially to the people of color. Don’t let this be part of your legacy. You’re the greatest artist of our generation.”

And while West thought Legend bringing up his legacy was a “fear used to manipulate” his free thought, Legend, on the other hand, urged West to think free but to think with empathy and context as well. JB

RELATED STORIES: 

Kanye West ‘loves’ Donald Trump, slams Barack Obama — radio jock

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TAGS: choice, Donald Trump, Kanye West, racism, Slavery
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