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Xavier Smith: The curious case of Kanye West

Xavier Smith • Updated May 2, 2018 at 1:00 PM

It was not, nor has it ever been about Kanye West supporting a Republican. 

I just wanted to get that out of the way because that seems to be the biggest notion stemming from Kanye’s latest round of erratic tweets and behavior. I, along with plenty of other people, could care less that he supports President Donald Trump. 

He didn’t just express his support for Trump this year. He did last year, and was there this much uproar about the support then? No, because it’s not about his allegiance to Trump. 

However, like any other person who aligns themselves with Trump – from politicians to business leaders – there will be backlash, and just because he’s Kanye, doesn’t mean he will be immune to that. 

Black people don’t have to be Democrats. That’s undisputedly true, but if you align yourself with Trump, there will be backlash, just like if you align yourself with Hillary Clinton, there will be backlash from certain people. That’s just how it works. 

I will say Kanye pushing the “Make America Great Again” sentiment caused problems with people because that would imply there was a better time in this country’s past for people that look like him and myself, when we know that’s definitely not the case. 

Now that we all understand that, let’s talk about the real issue with Kanye, which is he wants to be Trump. 

In the midst of his most viral Twitter rant (which rivals his new idol) he said they’re both “dragon energy.” I won’t even pretend to know what House Targaryen type of thing dragon energy is, but one of the things that Kanye and Trump have in common is they’re both polarizing, controversial figures that are known to speak their minds. 

The difference is Trump turned that persona into a room at the White House, while Kanye’s persona (admittedly) has caused him to become an outcast to a certain demographic (mainly due to the Taylor Swift MTV Awards incident) that he has longed to be accepted into. 

The Swift incident resulted in former President Barack Obama referring to West as a “jackass,” which led to Kanye’s disdain with Obama and his most recent jab at him with the tweet, “Obama was in office for eight years and nothing in Chicago changed.”

In an interview with radio personality Charlemagne the God, which was taped prior to his tweet, Kanye said the lack of changes in Chicago were “not [Obama’s fault]. Man, you seen that gray hair on that man’s head? You don’t know what that man was dealing with.”

So, why the flip, or the understanding that the tweet would insinuate the belief that Obama did nothing for Chicago, rather than the issues in Chicago were too big for one man to fix?

Obama didn’t give Kanye the platform he felt he deserved, so now he’s using Trump to rise to a level he felt he deserves at the expense of people who have always supported him.

This only scratches the surface of the issues people now have with Kanye West.

Xavier Smith is a staff writer for The Democrat. Email him at [email protected] and follow him on Twitter @wilsonnewswritr.

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