Kanye West has been on the chopping block for most Black folks. The “Yikes” rapper, who wore a MAGA hat and claimed that “slavery was a choice” back in May, has now shed addition light on those comments.
In a New York Times profile published Monday (June 25), West spends three days in Wyoming unpacking his life with journalist Jon Caramanica but, most shockingly, saying that audiences misheard him during his visit to TMZ.
“I said the idea of sitting in something for 400 years sounds—sounds—like a choice to me, I never said it’s a choice,” West said. “I never said slavery itself—like being shackled in chains—was a choice.”
When asked how he would rephrase his statement for clarity, he refused.
“I feel stupid to have to say out loud that I know that being put on the boat was—but also I’m not backing down, bro,” declared West. “What I will do is I’ll take responsibility for the fact that I allowed my voice to be used back to back in ways that were not protective of it when my voice means too much.”
Elsewhere, he again vocalizes support of President Donald Trump, to whom he said he shares “dragon energy” with. Though he mentions that he doesn’t agree with all of his policies, he doesn’t feel pressure to share the same liberal views as others in the Black community. He even likens his thought process and behaviors to that of children.
“Having a political opinion that’s overly informed, it’s like knowing how to dress, as opposed to being a child — ‘I like this,’ ” he said. “I hear Trump talk and I’m like, I like the way it sounds, knowing that there’s people who like me that don’t like the way it sounds.”
Later, he adds: “We need to be able to be in situations where you can be irresponsible,” he said. “That’s one of the great privileges of an artist. An artist should be irresponsible in a way—a 3-year-old.”
Though many from the Black community have “cancelled” Kanye, Mr. West feels his Black fan base will never abandon him as a whole. “You’re not always going to agree, but they’re not going to leave.”
Only time will tell.