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Prolific rapper and singer Kanye West has essentially endorsed President Donald Trump for the 2020 race despite criticism from the left, telling GQ magazine in an interview that he will not have his vote dictated by the color of his skin.
Undergirding this newfound outlook on life — one entirely anathema to the man who once accused then-President George W. Bush of not caring about black people — is the rapper’s recognition that neither he nor any other black person in America is a victim.
“‘George Bush doesn’t care about black people’ is a victim statement,” he said in the late January interview. “‘This white person didn’t do something for us’ — that is stemmed in victim mentality.”
“Every day I have to look in the mirror like I’m Robert De Niro and tell myself, ‘You are not a slave.’ As outspoken as I am, and the position that I am in, I need to tell myself.”
It’s necessary that he continually remind himself of this fact because of the media’s constant attempts to first portray him as some sort of representative for the entire black race and then malign him when he fails to represent the race appropriately.
Case in point:
CNN commentator Bakari Sellers on Kanye mtg with President Trump to discuss prison reform & job opportunities for ex-cons…“Kanye West is what happens when Negroes don’t read,” Sellers told CNN host Don Lemon.
— Lola Netty (@TXTrumpette89) July 17, 2019
“The media puts musicians, artists, celebrities, actors in a position to be the face of the race, that really don’t have any power and really are just working for white people. When it’s said like that, it’s kind of obvious, right?” West explained.
“We emotionally connect to someone of our color on TV and feel that this person is speaking for us. So let me say this: I am the founder of a $4 billion organization, one of the most Google-searched brands on the planet, and I will not be told who I’m gonna vote on because of my color.”
GQ interviewer Will Welch, a white man, seemed unconvinced and tried to rebut the rapper’s argument by describing his decision to support Trump as an act of “looking back … whereas to me, you are a perpetual forward thinker.”
The rapper replied by noting that economically speaking, he’s continuing to be a forward thinker.
“I buy real estate. It’s better now than when Obama was in office. They don’t teach you in school about buying property. They teach you how to become somebody’s property,” he said.
Note that the interview was recorded before the global coronavirus pandemic struck the United States.
When then questioned about the upcoming 2020 race, West made it clear that, despite the media’s caustic criticism, he’s voting for Trump.
“I’m definitely voting this time, and we know who I’m voting on,” he said. “And I’m not going to be told by the people around me and the people that have their agenda that my career is going to be over. Because guess what: I’m still here! Jesus Is King was No. 1!”
“I was told my career would end if I wasn’t with her. What kind of campaign is that, anyway? That’s like if Obama’s campaign was ‘I’m with black.’ What’s the point of being a celebrity if you can’t have an opinion? Everybody make their own opinion! You know?”
By her, he meant failed 2016 Democrat presidential nominee Hillary Rodham Clinton. Following the 2016 race, West admitted that he hadn’t cast a vote but said that he “would’ve voted for Trump” had he gone to the voting booth.
— albertoreyes (@albertoreyes) November 18, 2016
Welch responded to West’s tacit endorsement of Trump by claiming that “there is an expectation that when you have a voice as powerful as yours, you can’t just express yourself for yourself. You have to think of other people.”
The rapper seemingly ignored the question and began speaking about his past albums.
“Well, it’s good that we found out about all of those awards shows that partially led me to alcoholism,” he replied. “Whistle been blown, you know?”
“Imagine ‘My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy’ and ‘Watch the Throne’ [being eligible] the same year and neither of them being nominated for Album of the Year. Imagine doing The Life of Pablo and driving down the road and never hearing none of those songs on the radio and your wife and your daughter are in the car.”
It’s not clear what he meant.
The publication of the rapper’s remarks come as a new Fox News poll shows the president enjoying a 19 percent approval rating among black voters.
“In the Fox News survey, which was conducted April 4-7, 13% of registered black voters said they ‘somewhat approve’ of Trump’s job performance, with 6% saying they ‘strongly approve,'” the Washington Examiner reported late last week.
This potentially bodes well for the president. During the 2016 race, Clinton earned 89 percent of the black vote yet still lost.
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