Kanye West’s controversies: from his failed presidential bid to his anti-Semitic comments – KESQ

Angela Reyes Haczek

(CNN Spanish) – “Kanye West, in the middle of a controversy.” It doesn’t matter when you read this. The popular rapper is in the eye of the storm after some anti-Semitic comments that cost him harsh criticism and the loss of valuable contracts, but the truth is that this is just the last episode in a long list.

Antisemitic comments

In an episode of the “Drink Champs” podcast that aired earlier this month, the rapper made numerous outrageous comments, one of them linked to anti-Semitic messages. “I can say anti-Semitic things and Adidas can’t let me. And now what? ”, Said the rapper about one of the companies with which he had a contract.

He then posted in a since-deleted tweet that he was going to “go death with 3 [sic] On JEWISH PEOPLE”, which could be interpreted as a message of death against the Jews.

In an interview after the controversial tweet, which earned him a suspension from the social network, West told Piers Morgan that he was sorry for the people he had hurt, though he also said he did not regret making the comment.

The widely criticized comments prompted the companies to act. Within hours, Adidas, GAP and Balenciaga announced the end of their ties with West.

The theory about the death of George Floyd

West, who changed his name to “Ye,” suggested on the “Drink Champs” podcast episode that George Floyd died of a fentanyl overdose. His comments contradict the opinion of the medical examiner, who stated that Floyd died of “cardiopulmonary arrest” that occurred during “submission, restraint and compression of the neck by law enforcement.”

Dr. Andrew Baker, chief medical examiner for Hennepin County, said during testimony at the trial of former police officer Derek Chauvin that Floyd’s heart disease and fentanyl use were contributing factors in his death, but not the direct cause.

Following Kanye West’s statements, attorneys representing Roxie Washington, the mother of George Floyd’s daughter, issued a cease and desist letter to West stating that Floyd’s daughter is a “little girl who has been traumatized.” And she’s being retraumatized by Kanye West.”

(The NORE podcast co-host apologized to Floyd’s family for letting the rapper’s comments slide.)

Adidas ends relationship with Kanye West 1:12

Parler’s purchase

After West was temporarily blocked by Twitter for his anti-Semitic tweet, it emerged that the rapper would acquire Parler, a social media site of choice for many conservatives that has been linked to the attack on Capitol Hill.

“In a world where conservative views are seen as controversial, we need to make sure we have the right to freely express ourselves,” West said in a statement regarding the purchase.

Parler was founded in 2018 and saw rapid growth around the time of the 2020 election, peaking at 2.9 million daily users, according to market research firm Apptopia. However, since then the number has fallen sharply to around 40,000. (Twitter, by comparison, has more than 237 million daily active users.)

In the weeks following the assault on Capitol Hill on Jan. 6, Parler was removed from Apple’s App Store and Google’s Play Store because the companies said she failed to adequately moderate violent rhetoric on the platform. In fact, documents provided to the House committee investigating the Capitol riots showed that the Secret Service was aware of posts in Parler that suggested the possibility of violence around that day.

(Parler has since been reinstated in both app stores after making changes to its content moderation practices.)

“White Lives Matter”

The artist has also faced criticism this year for wearing a T-shirt bearing the inscription “White Lives Matter” during a surprise event at Paris Fashion Week.

The Anti-Defamation League called the phrase a “hate slogan” used by white supremacist groups, including the Ku Klux Klan. He was also harshly criticized online.

Phrases like ‘WLM’ and ‘Blue Lives Matter’ are reactionary responses in an attempt to silence the affirmation of Black lives. What Kanye West is doing is dangerous and only promotes further harm against the community he claims to care about. https://t.co/0xGBv22gTi – Bryant Odega 🎃 (@BryantOdega) October 3, 2022

West explained in an interview with Fox News the decision to wear the garment, stating that he put that inscription because “it’s the obvious thing to do.”

“The answer to why I wrote ‘White Lives Matter’ on a T-shirt is because they do,” West said, adding that it was considered controversial because “he’s not acting in a way that the media thinks he should act.

“Because the same people who have stripped us of our identity and labeled us as one color have told us what it means to be black,” West said.

Clashes with Kim Kardashian

Kim Kardashian and Kanye West met in the early 2000s, but it would be years before they became romantically involved. In 2014 they married in a luxurious wedding in Italy and together they have four children.

For years there were public messages of mutual support between the couple, for example when Kardashian asked for compassion for her husband for the bipolar disorder he suffered from.

However, in 2021 she filed for divorce from West and there have been angry clashes between the former couple ever since.

In February of this year, for example, the artist criticized the fact that Kardashian published content on TikTok with one of their daughters in common, and she responded in depth about the rapper’s “attacks”.

“Divorce is hard enough for our kids and Kanye’s obsession with trying to control and manipulate our situation in such negative and public ways is only causing more pain for everyone,” she said then.

The 2020 presidential race… and 2024?

Kanye West, who was for quite some time a vocal supporter of former President Donald Trump, announced his own run for President in 2020. “Now we must make the promise of the United States a reality by trusting in God, unifying our vision and building our future,” he said in the Twitter message in which he made his intentions public.

By the time he did, the deadline to register as an independent candidate in multiple states had already passed.

However, he went ahead… with a disappointing result: he got close to 70,000 votes in the states where he was able to register.

However, some recent messages, such as this tweet with which he returned to the social network after his suspension, seem to indicate that his political aspirations still live and fight.

2024 pic.twitter.com/CJsmMGhExW — ye (@kanyewest) October 8, 2022

The interruption to Talyor Swift at the 2009 MTV Music Awards

The rapper’s controversies are long-standing. In 2009, he interrupted Swift when she was giving a speech after accepting an award at the MTV Music Awards and told her, “I’ll let you finish, but Beyoncé has one of the best videos of all time!”

The incident caused Lady Gaga to cancel a joint tour, according to the rapper, when according to him he only said “what everyone was thinking”. “That night when I walked onstage was the beginning of the end of my life,” West said years later.

In his song “Famous,” West referenced Swift, who recently released “Midnights”: “I feel like me and Taylor might still have sex/Why? I made that b ** ch famous (I feel that Taylor and I could still have sex / Why? I made that bitch famous), “says the lyrics of his song that has been harshly criticized.

Six things we can learn from Taylor Swift

With reporting from CNN’s Ramishah Maruf, Maegan Vazquez, Betsy Klein, Jordan Valinsky, Lisa Respers France, Omar Jimenez, Brian Fung, Chloe Melas and Tylor Romaine.

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Kanye West’s controversies: from his failed presidential bid to his anti-Semitic comments – KESQ