Kanye West’s public support of Donald Trump has been capturing a lot of attention ever since the Life of Pablo rapper tweeted his admiration for the president.
Writing that he doesn’t “agree with everything anyone does,” West stated that “the mob can’t make me not love him.”
West even went so far as to tweet his excitement over receiving a “Make America Great Again” hat that had been signed by the president himself, even wearing it in public.
Given some of Trump’s controversial statements involving the Charlottesville riots, NFL players kneeling during the U.S. national anthem, and describing African nations as “s**thole countries,” West’s pro-Trump stance is causing confusion and consternation among both his fans and his peers in the music industry.
For example, fellow rappers Ice T and Smino issued tweets indicating they’re clearly not backing West’s political affiliation.
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Meanwhile, everyone from Oscar-winning “Get Out” director Jordan Peele to rap icon Snoop Dogg to singer Macy Gray have offered their own less-than-kind comments on Kanye’s apparent bromance with the president.
Frank Ocean took a more subtle approach, sharing a screenshot on Tumblr of West’s memorable appearance alongside Mike Myers during a benefit concert to raise money for Hurricane Katrina relief efforts in 2005. West had declared that then-president George W. Bush “doesn’t care about black people.”
Janelle Monae offered her opinion on West during an interview with Hot 97. “I don’t agree with him at all,” she said on air, sharing a tweet featuring video of that portion of the interview, writing “quote me.”
She added: “I believe in free thinking, but I don’t believe in free thinking if it’s rooted in or at the expense of the oppressed. If your free thinking is used as fuel by oppressors to continue to oppress black people and minorities, I think it’s bulls**t and it’s not okay, and I will speak out against it and I will think freely and tell you that I don’t agree with you.”
Meanwhile, not everyone is jumping on the #KanyeWestIsOverParty bandwagon. West’s fellow Chicago native Chance the Rapper took to Twitter to say that he recently spoke with West, who is in “a great space,” adding that “black people don’t have to be Democrats.”
Also coming to West’s defence is his wife. Kim Kardashian attempted to explain her husband’s support of Trump in a series of tweets in which she blasted those who equated West’s love for Trump with his mental health struggles.
Following the furor, West shared a screenshot of a text from someone identifed as JL — presumably John Legend — imploring West to give some thought to his pro-Trump stance and warning, “Don’t let this be part of your legacy.”
West rebuffs the message, declaring to “appreciate your thoughts,” but adding, “You bringing up my fans or my legacy is a tactic based on fear used to manipulate my free thought.”
West followed that up with a pair of tweets explaining why he shared that personal message ahd his response to it.
Legend’s wife, Chrissy Teigen, had something to say about West sharing the text message.
West offered an update of Legend’s followup text, in which Legend references the fact that Yeezy was tweeting out what he assumed would be a private text conversation, throwing a joking plug for his new album.