Over the weekend, Kanye West once again stirred the pot by tweeting his support for a conservative commentator and it set off progressives, the music world, and celebrities.
West may say things people don't always understand, but standing against political correctness and for independent-thinking is something that's easy for most people to understand – except many on the left.
His intial tweet was simple:
@kanyewest: I love the way Candace Owens thinks
Candance Owens is a vocal black conservative woman who works with Turning Point USA promoting ideas of limited government to college students. She also has a successful social media following with videos responding to news of the day affecting – particularly the black community.
Kanye West must agree with what she says and he wasn't shy to explain. He followed up his initial tweet with a series of others. Take a look:
@kanyewest: People demonize people and then they demonize anybody who sees anything positive in someone whose been demonized 2:29 PM – 22 Apr 2018
@kanyewest: The thought police want to suppress freedom of thought 2:30 PM – 22 Apr 2018
@kanyewest: we have freedom of speech but not freedom of thought 2:30 PM – 22 Apr 2018
@kanyewest: People respect people for following the general trend and consensus 2:47 PM – 22 Apr 2018
@kanyewest: It’s no more baring people because they have different ideas. 5:20 PM – 22 Apr 2018
The left was quick to bash his support for Owens as another sign that he's turning his back on the black community.
A writer explains in the Washington Post:
The rapper, once embraced for lyrics that attacked the racist underpinnings of U.S. drug policy, its criminal justice system and capitalism, had a strongly left-leaning foundation growing up. His father was a former Black Panther, and his late mother was a professor at a historically black college.
The writer quotes tweets from other blacks calling out West, but they all miss the very point that Kanye West correctly makes: he has a right to think independently. That they can't make room for a different perspective means they are the ones with a myopic view, not him.
During the campaign, West made public comments about candidate Donald Trump and was bashed so badly he had to take a leave. Let's hope he sticks to his convictions and doesn't back down.
We need more independent-thinking in music and the arts to stand up to the bullies who want to silence opposing views.