Kanye West’s celebrity gives his brazen antisemitism a more toxic power, reach and virality than his predecessors such as Louis C.K. or Woody Allen, whose private obsessions — celebrity, money and women, respectively — had become more public and less toxic as their careers flourished.
Indeed, West’s star has only risen with his escalating public display of anti-Semitic sentiments, which he has been accused of for decades.
“I didn’t know it was a bad thing to be a Jew. I didn’t know it was wrong. And I don’t now,” he told the crowd in his 2015 Grammy ceremony speech. “I’m in the club, I’m not even in the club. I’m in the club.”
He’s also been accused of hating the Jewish people. In a 2013 interview, he said: “I don’t like Jews.”
Kanye and his fans also don’t seem to care that the “Black Skinhead” rapper may have a deep and abiding hatred for black culture. And the singer-rapper has been a champion of white supremacy, with his “Jesus Walks” concert series, and his 2012 tour with Tyler, The Creator, in which the rapper used his stage to spread fear and hatred of black men.
In 2017, after Kanye was widely criticized for his “sons of bitches” comment at the end of a performance at Saturday’s Yeezy Movers Party during New York Fashion Week, a reporter from Vanity Fair wrote about the rapper’s “obsession” with black people, calling it “a kind of anti-black racism” of which he was “unconscious.”
That’s a remarkable level of bigotry from a musician whose entire career has been dedicated to making white people feel good about themselves.
But as with so many of his other racist and sexist remarks, Kanye has refused to take responsibility. He has tweeted and written: “My mother is white, so I’m not going to respond,” tweeted one user who posted about Kanye’s lack of decency. “You say you’re a liberal. And then you act like a racist.” He has never said publicly that