From his music to his interviews to his stage shows, Kanye West has a knack for causing controversy. Add tour merchandise to the list since the Yeezus tour paraphernalia the “New Slaves” rapper is peddling at his shows features images of the Confederate flag.
For those who may be confused, the Confederate (read: pro-slavery) states lost the Civil War; meaning that chapter when humans were treated as chattel in the United States could at least begin to be closed. Don’t let talk of the flag representing Southern pride fool you, it is a symbol of racism and hate, period.
Nevertheless, West has incorporated the Confederate flag into a couple of the t-shirts being sold at Yeezus tour stops. The merchandise is a collaboration with artist Wes Lang and includes a tee with emblazoned with a illustration of a skeleton, holding a sickle, that is draped in the flag and another of a skull in front of the flag with the words “I Ain’t Comin Down” surrounding it. We also spotted tote bags.
West’s buddy and Been Trill founder, and “style adviser,” posted images of the gear with a caption of the sickle wielding design reading, “Our mama’s were raised in an era when.. The touring merchandise collection of thoughts Doors open in 1 hour #yeezustour #weslang.”
No matter how you try to embrace or sanitize the confederate flag, you cannot undo the vile history it has come to represent. Do you think Yeezy’s crew has seen 12 Years A Slave yet or nah?
Let us know your opinion on West flipping the confederate flag for tour tees in the comments. Check out images of the wares in the gallery.
Photos: Instagram/Virgil Abloh