Kanye’s Downfall


New York Magazine

Has Kanye taken it too far this time?

Caitlyn Truong, Photojournalist

Kanye West, famed rapper and husband to Kim Kardashian, is perhaps more famous for his strange, passionate tweets than for his actual music. In the recent weeks, however, his Twitter followers have found themselves disgustedly scrutinizing his tweets rather than being typically amused by their absurdity.

Kanye recently posted a series of extremely controversial tweets consisting of praise for President Trump followed by defense over his political standing. His downward spiral began in late April with a tweet stating, “You don’t have to agree with Trump but the mob can’t make me not love him. We are both dragon energy. He is my brother. I love everyone. I don’t agree with everything anyone does. That’s what makes us individuals. And we have the right to independent thought.”

He later posted a picture of a signed “Make America Great Again” red cap, the symbol of President Trump’s campaign, with the caption, “We got love.” Donald Trump replied to Kanye’s praise with a “Thank you Kanye, very cool!” tweet. These tweets were received with outrage from both fans and friends; in particular, Kanye himself posted a text conversation between him and fellow successful artist John Legend, who reminded him that “what you say really means something to your fans” and urged him to prevent this from “being a part of your legacy” because he is “the greatest artist of our generation.” In true Kanye-like fashion, Kanye simply dismissed his text as a “tactic based on fear used to manipulate [his] free thought.”

While some Twitter users pointed out that Kanye West’s follower count had dropped from 27.8 million followers to 18.6 million followers in response to his tweets, according to Billboard, a Twitter spokesperson confirmed that Kanye still had 27 million followers, and “any fluctuation that people might be seeing is an inconsistency.” Twitter users nonetheless ruthlessly attacked Kanye, prompting wife Kim Kardashian to tweet to his defense. She shamed those blaming Kanye’s commentary on mental health issues, praised him for being a free thinker, and believed him to be “years ahead of his time.”

A week later, Kanye West stopped by TMZ to comment, “When you hear about slavery for 400 years…For 400 years? That sounds like a choice.” He later attempted to justify his claim, but it was too late; the hashtag #IfSlaveryWasAChoice was the top trend on Twitter for hours.

From publicly announcing his love for President Trump to deeming 400 years of slavery a choice, Kanye’s reputation quickly and irrevocably came to ruins. Shifa Mirza (10) comments, “Kanye has always been…interesting, but he took it too far this time. I can’t treat anyone who says that slavery was a choice with even the slightest respect.” While this may eventually fade to another infamous Kanye incident, it certainly will not be forgotten.