Kanye West has dominated the news cycle and sparked a number of debates regarding his recent political commentary, most especially his high regard for President Donald Trump. Writer Ta-Nehisi Coates is the latest public figure to take aim at West’s utterances, essentially stating that the Chicago superstar is chasing “white freedom.”
From The Atlantic:
What Kanye West seeks is what Michael Jackson sought—liberation from the dictates of that we. In his visit with West, the rapper T.I. was stunned to find that West, despite his endorsement of Trump, had never heard of the travel ban. “He don’t know the things that we know because he’s removed himself from society to a point where it don’t reach him,” T.I. said. West calls his struggle the right to be a “free thinker,” and he is, indeed, championing a kind of freedom—a white freedom, freedom without consequence, freedom without criticism, freedom to be proud and ignorant; freedom to profit off a people in one moment and abandon them in the next; a Stand Your Ground freedom, freedom without responsibility, without hard memory; a Monticello without slavery, a Confederate freedom, the freedom of John C. Calhoun, not the freedom of Harriet Tubman, which calls you to risk your own; not the freedom of Nat Turner, which calls you to give even more, but a conqueror’s freedom, freedom of the strong built on antipathy or indifference to the weak, the freedom of rape buttons, pussy grabbers, and f*ck you anyway, b*tch; freedom of oil and invisible wars, the freedom of suburbs drawn with red lines, the white freedom of Calabasas.
The entire piece is worth a read, which can be found here. Hit the flip to see reactions, both positive and critical, to Coates’ words.