On the one hand, who cares what hip-hop star Kanye West thinks. He is, after all, the guy who’s married to Kim Kardashian — another real who-cares moment, for most of America, anyway.
But on the other hand, West is breaking the black rapper mold, not to mention Hollywood elitist bubble, by coming forward in support of conservatives and the First Amendment.
And that’s kinda significant and notable.
West said in a recent interview on Ebro in the Morning, “I do love Donald Trump.” He also filled his Twitter feed with blunt statements of support for conservative commentator and Turning Point USA communications director Candace Owens — a woman who recently described Black Lives Matter protesters as “a bunch of whiny toddlers, pretending to be oppressed for attention” and as possessed of a collective “victim mentality.”
Such thoughts ought to make Owens a pariah to the black rap community, at least according to the stereotypical line of thought that pushes the narrative of BLM members as heroes, gallantly fighting the racist police and racist political system and racism that’s inherent in the Constitution.
But West has bucked the system a bit and filled his Twitter feed with pro-Owens, pro-freedom of speech statements. That’s maybe not completely surprising, given he publicly met with Trump in 2016 and shortly after told a concert audience: “I told you I didn’t vote. But if I voted I would have voted on Trump.”
Still — if culture feeds the politics, then West’s open embrace of both Trump and Owens seems a bit of light in a dark pit of leftist-pressed stiflings. The left has been on a tirade of late to clamp all rhetoric that counters its progressive-socialist goals; West’s willingness to put himself out there and throw a countering voice in the fray is refreshing, and quite possibly, influential.
“I love the way Candace Owens thinks,” West tweeted a couple days ago.
And this one, the same day: “Self victimization is a disease.”
And this one: “There was a time when slavery was the trend and apparently that time is still upon us. But now it’s a mentality.”
Another: “Constantly bringing up the past keeps you stuck there.”
Yet another: “The thought police want to suppress freedom of thought.”
His followers have since retweeted thousands and thousands of time.
And if even a small fraction of those retweets signify support and agreement — that’s a good thing. It means the left’s hold on rigid compliance with its narrow anti-conservative principles is crumbling. That West is carrying that torch for freedom is perhaps a bit eyebrow raising to some — but it’s commendable, just the same.
• Cheryl Chumley can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter, @ckchumley.
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