Author: Robert

Kanye West’s Twitter rants on racism

Kanye West’s Twitter rants on racism

Kim Kardashian condemns Kanye West’s antisemitic remarks, stands with Jewish community

It was a whirlwind few days. First, Kanye West’s fans celebrated his performance at Saturday Night Live on the night of his Grammy win (I covered the whole thing here). Then, during a Saturday interview on CBS, West told correspondent Norah O’Donnell that he would have performed at this year’s ceremony if Jay-Z had not been invited. He said, instead, “I would have invited the motherfucker that I’m mad at right here [to perform].”

What followed was an epic Twitter storm, the likes of which I’ve never seen. There were celebrities and pundits asking a lot of questions, including why West would do what he said he would do, the ethics of calling out a fellow rapper, and whether Jay-Z — who West has never met but reportedly considers a close friend — had a hand in doing so. Even the New York Times published an important story, calling West “a white supremacist,” and noting that he appeared to be making a “reckless” comment (by his own account) but was “not calling for the death of the Jews.”

But it was the moment that caught my eye that caused me to feel I knew what was going on. After West went on, calling Jews “apes,” O’Donnell asked him to repeat himself. “You can’t say that,” he said. “I mean, that’s an antisemitic thing to say, right?”

“You can’t say that,” she repeated.

West stared at her, then said, “You can say it. If you say it over and over again people will start to believe you.” He said the same thing, on a second show. In an unedited version of his comment, he actually said, “The Jew in front of you believes these people are superior to you.”

There was a time when people didn’t get on Twitter to call out racists, they called police. Now, when it comes to the most public racism of all — verbal, even if it was an isolated incident — what was once a no-win situation now seems like a win-win. For the first time in my 40 years of covering the world of professional

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