Like a frustrated toddler, if there’s one thing Kanye West knows how to do better than anything, it’s get attention.
And, with new releases on the horizon, he’s employed all of his talents to make sure the world is aware of its impending arrival, using Twitter to release a self-help/philosophy book in 280-character chunks, indulging in a Twitter love-in with Donald Trump, posting photos of his eerie ‘tomb-like’ home, declaring that he would use a photo of the man who performed his late mother’s final surgery and who he blames for her death (before being asked to ‘cease and desist’ from this idea by the doctor in question, who has previously been cleared of any wrongdoing), then conducting a two-hour interview with Charlamagne Tha God where he revealed that he was addicted to opioids after having liposuction.
But this was a mere warm-up to the main event: claiming that slavery was ‘a choice’.
I mean, it’s definitely got your attention hasn’t it?
The comments came during an interview with TMZ, when he said:
“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?
“You know, it’s like we’re mentally imprisoned. I like the word prison cos slavery goes to direct to the idea of blacks - it’s like slavery, holocaust, holocaust, Jews, slavery is blacks, so prison is something that unites us as one race, blacks and whites being one race, we’re the human race.”
Yes, he really said that. Just watch below.
Fortunately, TMZ staffer Van Lathan was on hand to school Kanye in a bit of, y’know, actual, factual thought rather than total merit-free bullshit.
After Kanye shouts out: “Do you feel that I’m feeling… that I’m being free, and I’m thinking free?”
Van speaks for the world, saying: “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 consequence behind everything that you just said.
“And while you are making music, and being an artist, and living a life that you’ve earned by being a genius, the rest of us in society have to deal with these threats to our lives. We have to deal with the marginalisation that has come from the 400 years of slavery that you said, for our people, was a choice… right now we’re choosing to be enslaved.”
“Frankly, I’m disappointed, I’m appalled, and brother I am unbelievably hurt by the fact that you have morphed into something, to me, that’s not real.”
Naturally, Kanye took to Twitter to splurge some more:
Saying something controversial, ‘unsayable’ and not based in reality, knowing that whatever happens - criticism or support - you win because you get free publicity?
That’s straight out of the Trump playbook. No wonder he’s a fan.