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The Awakening of Mr. West

“Sellout”! “Koon-ye West”! “Puppet”! “Buck dancing Nigga”! “Slave”! “He needs his medication!”

Those were some of the immediate arrows hurled by the social media group think mob immediately after Kanye West, one of the most influential yet polarizing figures in popular culture over the past decade met last Thursday with the President of the United States (another agent of division) Donald Trump in Washington D.C. The “outrage” from the “woke” masses on Black Twitter (is there a “Black” IG or Facebook?) was matched by traditional media outlets like MSNBC and CNN, which had talking heads claiming to represent the collective ideas and feelings of the black community, clamoring for tv time for the opportunity to disparage Mr. West for leveraging his platform to meet the most powerful man in the free world and discuss issues such as gang violence in Chicago, American manufacturing, and the detrimental dependency of black Americans on the Democratic Party among other topics. Don Lemon, of CNN, who must have really been hurt by the idea of a musician meeting with a sitting POTUS (clearly he forgot about Nicki Minaj, Pusha T, Kendrick Lamar, and the author of “selling dope from the iPhone” rapper Rick Ross meeting with President Obama) ratcheted up the insults to another level by claiming Kanye West’s late mother would be “ashamed” and that “Mr. West needs help”. Both traditional and social media, which over the past few years have been the defacto virtue signaling platforms for mental health advocacy, anti-bullying, and opioid abuse are now unified in publicly bullying a man, shaming his mental condition (if he even has one) and suggesting that mind altering drugs be forced upon him. Why are the Left and its appointed talking heads taking this approach? The progressives which scream tolerance and acceptance are now banded together in their lethal rejection and intolerance of Mr. West which is in stark contrast to their treatment of other celebrities and public figures (see Bill Clinton sexual harassment/assault), Charlie Sheen (unprotected sex while having HIV), Demi Lovato (drug use) and Bruce Jenner (gender fluidity) thrust in the news cycle. Perhaps, Kanye being a black man is the reason for the ire drawn, as historically outspoken, loud, boisterous and powerful men of color are often shunned and sometimes silenced (by more permanent means than being smeared in the media). But one will point out and argue that race can’t be the root cause of the public condemnation of West, as the majority of his most vociferous critics are Black. So, what’s the underlying issue here? Why is everyone (not everyone, just the “WOKE” and the Left) so mad at a man for meeting with another man? The answer is as complex and apparently present as Kanye West is. And yes, race is about a big part of the puzzle.


“Make Kanye 2006 Again”

A tale as old as time, one chronicled in the annals of history, literature and cinema, is the one where heroes once championed by the public, become villains if they stick around long enough. Although, sticking around apparently isn’t what turned the public against Kanye, because between 2004 B.O (Before Obama) until let’s say 2016 A.D. (After Donald), Kanye West despite his public persona as an eccentric artist provocateur with pervasive non-mainstream thoughts was the cool kid and media darling of the liberal intelligentsia and progressive elite. People couldn’t get enough of the enigma of Kanye West. His tour dates around the world sold out. His music was downloaded and streamed millions of times. He graced magazine covers like Time and Rolling Stone.  People dropped north of $300 for a pair of Yeezys. Mr. West’s music, often underscoring the pain and complexity of suburban Black America (those removed from the violence and trappings of inner-city life but close enough to feel its effects), was the soundtrack for those that didn’t drop out of college and for the white friends they met in the elevators in the buildings of their first jobs. He won even when the media declared that he “lost”. From bum-rushing the 2009 VMAs stage during Taylor Swift’s acceptance speech to defend Beyoncé, to telling Sway in a radio interview he ‘didn’t have the answers’ to inner workings of the fashion industry he claimed was black balling him or marrying into one of the most popular and maligned families of the post social media age, the Kardashians, by taking Kim as his wife , Kanye seemingly was able to navigate the pitfalls of “cancellation” with aplomb. He had built enough equity from the Left by declaring on national tv that President Bush didn’t “care about black people” and by being one of the first mainstream hip hop acts to accept homosexuals and claim the community should not be homophobic.

Fast-forward to 2016 and the nation is the midst of a political transformation. Donald J. Trump, the New York City real estate tycoon and host of ‘The Apprentice’, blasted on the scene as a Presidential candidate, laying waste to the establishment Republican primary opponents and now posed a legitimate threat to Secretary Hillary Clinton in the general election. Mr. Trump’s brash loud and bombastic campaign, attacking what he called ‘the crooked media’ and tapping into the heart of American Nationalism began to appeal to a large swath of voters disillusioned with the status quo of Washington DC career politicians which Clinton represented. There were many reports claiming Donald Trump was gaining support from voters that cast their ballots for President Obama in 2008 and 2012. Trump’s defiance of traditional speech patterns, norms and political decorum during the election had parallels of hip-hop showmanship, infusing an air of rebellion and anger that served as the basis of a counter cultural revolution. Apparently, Trump’s style (which was praised before his public insertion in the political process by Hip Hop icons Snoop Dogg, Puff Daddy, Method Man among others) inspired Kanye West. So much so he declared during a concert that he loved Trump and if he voted he would surely have his support. While this position might have been a surprise for many, those that have followed Kanye West’s career from its infancy were not shocked. Kanye’s history, like Trump’s is one of thinking big and making big bold statements. Through interviews, lyrics, and stage Kanye displayed an affinity for power, opulence, and rejecting the status quo. That spirit is what endeared him to the left and his fans. But this time was different. With the aid of social media (these platforms were either non-existent or in the beginning stages during the mid-2000s), the 2016 election had caused “progressives” to publicly draw a line in the proverbial sand. You either wear a red MAGA (Make America Great Again) or you’re with her Free spirits with free thoughts like Kanye West couldn’t exist in the middle and when he didn’t repeat their talking points (“Trump is a racist”, “Resist”, “Gun Control”) the agenda was set to publicly deconstruct him.

Since the day Ye started rocking his “superhero” costume, a red MAGA hat, the progressive left world has seemingly turned against him. If we are to believe social the media feed (oxymoronic?) Kanye West is lost and needs to be ‘re-programmed’. According to the firing squad, no self-respecting black man can admire a vile racist like Trump. Only a “coon” would meet with this President and believe that America can be made great. We need to abolish the 13th amendment says Kanye. “Oh, he must be nuts”! replies the left even though a year ago, everyone on that side of the aisle was praising Ava DuVernay’s film ‘The 13th’ on Netflix which raised the exact same point as West. “Kanye is cancelled! He said slavery was a choice”! Really? If Kanye is cancelled then are we going to cancel all philosophy classes on college and university campuses that discuss men’s free will and determination? In the social media age under the rule of the Leftist Mob are we able to debate, examine arguments, and present counter ideas and fresh perspectives? Or are we programmed to ‘like’ and agree, to acquiesce to a social acceptance in fear of being banished from Black Twitter or even worst ‘unfriended’? In the future, can a brash enigmatic figure like Kanye West ascend to the same astronomical heights that made him a star? Or will he be chained to a thought, shackled into political obedience by the friends of the Democrats in the mainstream media who feed the social peanut gallery. Clearly, Kanye made his choice.

Thursday October 11th, within the Oval Office, the cameras flashed capturing the President (‘45’ as the Woke-ians say) and Kanye West (rocking the red MAGA) exchanging in dialogue that only those who operate in the existence of grand scale polarization can understand. The magnitude of the moment was striking, serving as a counterstrike to the protest movement that has served as lightning rod for the past 2 years. Here we had a black man, an artist, sitting with President Trump discussing several critical issues, among those being his love and hope for America, the city of Chicago, and he highlighted the pain inflicted on those that look like him in our country. There was no kneeling, yelling, disrespect yet this meeting of the minds caused such a stir on social media that it is apparent what the agenda is. Those controlling the minds via the media are afraid that other black men will think in the way Kanye is thinking (which admittedly isn’t always coherent) and be measured, thoughtful, and respectfully engage with those they disagree or have differences with. That type of thinking would chip away at the Democratic stronghold on the black community which has taken advantage of our voting power for years in exchange for mostly nothing. That ‘Kanye’ type of thinking would cause athletes to get off their knees, stand up and bring their grievances to the table for not only discussion but resolution. The Left doesn’t want these types of thoughts to permeate through our community, so they have labeled Kanye West a ‘nutjob’ ,a man that must be controlled through medication. Perhaps if Kanye just “takes his meds” he will answer the cries (retweets?) of Black Twitter and “Wake Up Mr. West”! But the truth is there no need for Mr. West to wake up. His program can’t be dismissed easily or “cancelled”. The cold hard truth is that we are witnessing the awakening of Mr. West. Now that he is up, the “woke” can change the channel from CNN, turn the TV off or better yet go to sleep.



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