UPDATE: On Wednesday, Kanye West doubled down on his "love" for President Donald Trump in a series of tweets, including one with a picture of him wearing a "Make America Great Again" hat.
we got love pic.twitter.com/Edk0WGscp6— KANYE WEST (@kanyewest) April 25, 2018
You don't have to agree with trump but the mob can't make me not love him. 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.— KANYE WEST (@kanyewest) April 25, 2018
If your friend jumps off the bridge you don't have to do the same. Ye being Ye is a fight for you to be you. For people In my life the idea of Trump is pretty much a 50 50 split but I don't tell a Hillary supporter not to support Hillary— KANYE WEST (@kanyewest) April 25, 2018
I love Hillary too.
I love when people have their own ideas. You don't have to be allowed anymore. Just be.— KANYE WEST (@kanyewest) April 25, 2018
Love who you want to love. That's free thought. I'm not even political. I'm not a democrat or a republican
my wife just called me and she wanted me to make this clear to everyone. I don't agree with everything Trump does. I don't agree 100% with anyone but myself.— KANYE WEST (@kanyewest) April 25, 2018
my MAGA hat is signed 🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥 pic.twitter.com/DrDHJybS8V— KANYE WEST (@kanyewest) April 25, 2018
Some of West's tweets even garnered a response from Trump, himself, offering up a nod of gratitude for the apparent support.
Thank you Kanye, very cool! https://t.co/vRIC87M21X— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) April 25, 2018
MAGA! https://t.co/jFf5ONASlv— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) April 25, 2018
As a result of West's erratic tweeting, the social media platform exploded into a frenzy of opinionated responses, criticism, and unfollows.
Some media outlets began attributing West's behavior to a mental health issue, which prompted his wife, Kim Kardashian, to speak out in defense of her spouse.
To the media trying to demonize my husband let me just say this... your commentary on Kanye being erratic & his tweets being disturbing is actually scary. So quick to label him as having mental health issues for just being himself when he has always been expressive is not fair— Kim Kardashian West (@KimKardashian) April 25, 2018
He’s a free thinker, is that not allowed in America? Because some of his ideas differ from yours you have to throw in the mental health card? That’s just not fair. He’s actually out of the sunken place when he’s being himself which is very expressive— Kim Kardashian West (@KimKardashian) April 25, 2018
Now when he spoke out about Trump... Most people (including myself) have very different feelings & opinions about this. But this is HIS opinion. I believe in people being able to have their own opinions,even if really different from mine— Kim Kardashian West (@KimKardashian) April 25, 2018
He never said he agrees with his politics
Of course, it is completely unsurprising that Kardashian would stand by her husband against the general public, so her impassioned response should be taken with a grain of salt. But there is at least one point she made that everyone can agree upon, which relates to the seriousness of mental health.
Mental Health is no joke and the media needs to stop spitting that out so casually. Bottom line— Kim Kardashian West (@KimKardashian) April 25, 2018
In any case, West's tweetstorm went on and on since the wee hours of the morning, and the only real, concrete message to take away from it all is that it has been a strange, whirlwind of a day in the Twitterverse.
It's bad enough that we have to endure Trump's excessive tweeting, and now, West is following in the footsteps of his "brother" with unhinged rants of his own.
Kanye West is either trying to prove a really warped point, tap into a new fan base, or he has truly crossed over to the far right.
Since the renowned rapper from Chicago — and husband to reality star Kim Kardashian — returned to Twitter recently, he has shared posts that seem to promote alt-right ideologies.
On Saturday, West tweeted the praises of conservative black commentator Candace Owens who slammed a Black Lives Matter protest during an event on the campus of University of California Los Angeles (UCLA).
West wrote, “I love the way Candace Owens thinks.”
Unsurprisingly, he faced backlash as a result of his message, which seems counterproductive to everything he once stood for.
Owens responded to the frenzy West’s tweet sparked by asserting, “He is the only person that is in hip-hop or that has a public stage that is willing to think independently.”
She added that she and West both refuse to engage in “groupthink."
On Monday, West was back at it when he tweeted snippets of a 22-minute video by Scott Adams, the former “Dilbert” cartoonist and one of the first social commentators to predict Donald Trump’s presidential win. Adams claimed in the clip that West had “ripped a hole in reality” by tweeting his admiration for Owens.
Then, there is the notorious right-wing “Infowars” host Alex Jones, who tweeted an invitation for West to appear on his show. Jones, who is currently embroiled in multiple legal battles, is known for his inflammatory commentary and outrageous conspiracy theories.
.@kanyewest I admire your bold moves against the thought police. And if you want to see these control-freak vampires really go crazy, please join me on my broadcast!👌— Alex Jones (@RealAlexJones) April 23, 2018
This latest string of events is not the first time we’ve seen this behavior from West. After the 2016 election, he met with Trump at New York City’s Trump Tower, prompting rumors that he would be performing at his inauguration, which was struggling at the time, to find A-List celebrities willing to attend.
Before canceling several dates of his 2016 Saint Pablo Tour after having a few meltdowns as a result of so-called exhaustion, West also declared on-stage during one of his shows that if he had voted, it would have been for Trump.
First and foremost, it is important to note that West has every right to support whichever political views and figureheads he wants. That is, still, one of the great things about being American. However, as a black artist with a largely black fan base, his support of seemingly anti-black political agendas is raising eyebrows.
There could, however, be a method to West’s madness.
He's Reminding America To "Stay Woke":
There is a possibility that West is actually trying to prove a point about social awareness in which he shows us that folks aren’t as committed to their beliefs as they claim to be.
Despite West’s vocal support of Trump, he is still backed by many black Americans who claim to be anti-Trump. He faces criticism for a while until all the outrage dies down, then all he has to do is announce a new album or a new pair of Yeezy shoes, and suddenly, no one cares that he’s pro-Trump anymore. His career and fame have not suffered as a result of these antics. So, what does that tell us about society’s values?
He's Still Upset About That "Jacka**" Remark:
Then, there’s the chance that West’s love for Trump and right-wing politics is genuine, which could be the result of many factors; the most obvious being that Trump’s policies benefit the rich, and it’s no secret that West is, indeed, a wealthy man.
Also, West could have crossed over to the right after being publicly criticized by former President Barack Obama, who called him a “jacka**” in 2009, following his infamous interruption of singer Taylor Swift’s video of the year acceptance speech. West may have felt abandoned or insulted by the commander in chief at the time and, therefore, now rejects the Democratic Party entirely.
He's Obsessed With Going Against The Grain:
Lastly, what may be the most interesting theory floating around is that West might feel that he and Trump share something in common. After all, they both successfully achieved aspirations that others said they wouldn’t.
West has gloated about how he’s found success as a fashion designer despite being rejected so many times when he first presented his ideas to various companies. Similarly, many people — including his opponents — took Trump’s presidential run as a joke and scoffed at the idea of him ever becoming president. Yet, here we are.
West's obsession with proving people wrong may be what fuels his attraction to Trump.
Owens’ comments about West suggest that this is the way he operates in all aspects of his life.
"They told Kanye that he couldn't be in fashion so he created an entire brand,” she said. “They told Kanye that he couldn't like Kim [Kardashian] so he married her.”
She added: "This is who Kanye West is fundamentally."
West may not ever offer the public a rational explanation for his unpopular political views, and if we're being honest, he doesn't have to. However, it seems that people are no longer willing to ignore that a once outspoken pro-black artist is supporting an unapologetically racist president. The growing exasperation among his black fan base could eventually result in a serious blow to his career.
Banner/Thumbnail Credits: REUTERS/Charles Platiau