OP-ED: WHAT ARE WE GOING TO DO ABOUT KANYE?
www.ebony.com By Savannah Taylor Kanye West, yet again, has induced waves across the internet with his reckless verbiage and actions in the name of free speech. Unless you’ve lived under a rock, you are most likely familiar with the increasing frequency of West’s very public streams of diluted consciousness in the form… The post OP-ED: WHAT ARE WE GOING TO DO ABOUT KANYE? appeared first on The Oklahoma Eagle.
Kanye West, yet again, has induced waves across the internet with his reckless verbiage and actions in the name of free speech. Unless you’ve lived under a rock, you are most likely familiar with the increasing frequency of West’s very public streams of diluted consciousness in the form of social media post rants and interviews over the past few years. Continuing in this same fashion, the rapper and fashion designer recently put on a presentation in Paris for season nine of his brand YZY that depicted his interpretation of what “high fashion” is. The collection included a variety of pieces that can only be described simply as overhyped, drab and underwhelming. But the main star of the show were the “White Lives Matter” slogan seen on the back of some of his designs. Doubling down on its usage, the troubled “jeen-yuhs” posted images of himself side by side with Candace Owens, a right-wing conservative and a well-known pundit of anti-Blackness, wearing the audacious wording on the back of their shirts as she smiles.
Many of fashion’s most prominent luminaries that were in the space took issue with the inclusion of the hideous tagline; however, the most succinct and spot on analysis came from Vogue’s Global Fashion Editor Gabriella Karefa-Johnson, a voluptuous Black woman who is confident in her skin. Karefa-Johnson delivered a masterful critique on her personal platform on how disgustingly violent and harmful Kanye’s display of ignorance was through the collection.
Not taking kindly to the feedback, West stooped to a new level of vitriol by tearing into Karefa-Johnson with rude, fatphobhic remarks while unleashing his clout-hungry social media goons to continue his dirty work.
While many have rallied behind the talented fashion editor and spoken out in defense of her, this incident has proven once more why Malcolm X said in 1962, “The most disrespected person in America, is the Black woman. The most un-protected person in America is the Black woman. The most neglected person in America is the Black woman.” Six decades later, his proclamation rings louder and more devastatingly clearer than ever before. Misogynoir, the immense and innate hatred of the Black woman’s existence, is so fiercely burned into the construction of this country and is evident in the make of a man who was once the indomitable Kanye West.
And then, as if this situation could not get any more worse, he then triples down on his actions and vows to decimate the Black Lives Matter movement.
Yes, to some groups of people external to the Black community, there is unfortunately still a need to describe why that phrase is an inadequate and impermissible response to the movement that is Black Lives Matter. In response, Black Lives Matter Grassroots released a statement that reminds West of the origins of Black Lives Matter, why the hashtag was initially created and why, in 2022, we continue to belt those three words at the top of our lungs while the subject of our humanity is consistently a topic of debate.
“Kanye West and Candace Owens sent a performative dog whistle to millions. Kanye knows very well that ‘white lives’ have never been targeted for oppression. Black folks, in contrast, are at the bottom of virtually every economic, social, and political measure because of centuries of individual and institutional racism. Building a world of Black freedom means upending systems that harm and building new systems of care. Ultimately this benefits everyone. When Black people get free, everybody gets free,” said the organization.
Social media, predictably, has roared with commentary from both sides of the fence with both valid assessment and praise of his usage of the white supremacist signaling which is, perhaps, what he wanted.
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