Don’t believe everything you see on the internet, people. Apart from this article—this article is gold.
Several weeks ago I wrote about Kanye West’s Presidential Candidacy announcement. We all questioned the seriousness behind it, but after yesterday, we can see that he’s putting at least part of his money where his mouth is.
On Sunday, July 19th, Kanye held his first campaign rally in North Charleston, South Carolina. In typical Yeezy fashion, he wore a military-like bulletproof vest, sported a new ‘2020’ haircut—literally, it was shaved into his head—and brought a few controversial statements to get us all talking. Well, that’s what it seems like it anyway.
Various clips from West’s live-streamed event have been circulating the internet toilet bowl, but one that stands out are comments he makes about one of the most famous figures in American history: Harriet Tubman–gasp.
In this clip, West says “Harriet Tubman didn’t actually free the slaves, she just had the slaves go work for other white people.” Judging by the sound the crowd makes, it doesn’t seem like a popular argument.
Now, of course this brief clip is sure to stir the pot. How can it not when it’s all we’re seeing? Well, what many of us fail to realize is that Kanye’s statement didn’t end there—he went on to continue an actual point…eventually.
In a separate video posted by another Twitter user, West goes on to explain his point even further and actually give us some context behind his words.
“The National Basketball Association is not owned by any blacks. Universal Music is not owned by any blacks. Any celebrity that you see talking is not the real power, because the real power—and I am putting my life on the line today to speak about—you don’t see them. You don’t see the real power.”
Though it takes quite awhile (and some close listening) for him to get there, it seems that a point is being made: the world is still run by a special class of people (who many believe are the elite white) and there is not enough black representation.
Another video has circulated Twitter of him crying. As this is unusual behavior from any Presidential candidate, much of the online community is choosing to criticize his tears instead of listening to the message behind it, which was that his father wanted him to be aborted.
So, the meaning behind this article is clear: the internet chooses it’s own context to apply to a story. Behind everything we see online, there is always something more that’s been edited out. No matter who you support, no matter who you decide to vote for in November—if they get they’re name on the ballot of course—always do your research. Sure, Kanye is a pretty controversial dude who has done and said some pretty ‘out there’ stuff. But, for the internet to pick and choose what we see and decide how we frame him isn’t cool, period.
At least form your own opinion before letting others do it for you, no matter who it is.