Kanye West has reminded us that he’s a college dropout since 2004, and yet somehow he’s flunking out of American History and Political Science 101 in real time right before our eyes 14 years later as a 40-year-old adult. What started as a signal of appreciation for right-wing pundit Candace Owen quickly turned into an embrace of Donald Trump’s #MAGA movement, then gave way to some seriously obtuse misunderstandings of the history and function of American political parties—and, on TMZ this afternoon, has now reached the point where he’s declaring that slavery sounds like a “choice.”
Actually, it’s worse than that one purposefully contrarian kid who hijacked classes with confounding questions during freshmen year. Really, it’s like we’re all forced to relive Thanksgiving every day and West is our weird uncle who keeps having one bourbon after another only interrupted by declarations of “Well, if you want to know what I really think…”
While many of us are blessed with relative anonymity, high-profile people have to decide how they’re going to deal with rambunctious uncle Kanye. Are they just going to politely excuse themselves from the table and cry in their bedroom? Are they going to use the moment as an opportunity to go outside for a cigarette with that one cousin who smokes, to talk shit and snicker? Are they going to confront him about his comments, and turn it into a whole thing right in front of Grandma? Or are they going to wait until the next day and try to have a more rational discussion with him then?
Here, a running list of the various Kanye confrontations and subtweets doled out by an ever growing list of varied public figures.
Ocean’s preferred social medium is the humble Tumblr blog, and the former West collaborator took to his dashboard this morning to write, “I like the way Michelle Wolf thinks,” a callback to Kanye’s original “I like the way Candace Owens thinks” tweet. To hammer the point home, he also included a photo of West from the infamous 2005 telethon in which he declared “George Bush doesn’t care about black people.”
Rep. Maxine Waters
West keeps talking about politics and spreading Dinesh D’Souza–level conspiracy theories about the history of the label “Democratic Party,” so it was only a mater of time until someone from that party decided to weigh in. Rep. Maxine Waters, the longest-serving African-American woman currently in Congress, had some thoughts when asked by a reporter.
“We don’t think that he actually means to do harm, but we’re not sure he really understands the impact of what he’s saying, at the time that he’s saying it and how that weighs on, particularly the African-American community — and for young people in general,” Waters told Politico. “And I think maybe he should think twice about politics, and maybe not have so much to say.”
TMZ Reporter Van Latham
We’re sure a lot of people have wanted to yell at Kanye to his face over this past week or so, but when West popped by the TMZ offices today, Latham got the chance and actually followed through.
Missy Elliott usually avoids drama and beef, and it’s done well for her career. Who doesn’t love Missy Elliott? Though, the day West’s #MAGA stunting really hit the fan, she tweeted, “LET A FOOL ARGUE ALONE.” Given the timing, many assume this pertains to West. Of course, the best subtweets are the ones we’re not really sure are subtweets at all, so lets not jump to too many conclusions.
The same could be said for Cardi B. She has actually gone on the record with her adoration for former President Franklin Delano Roosevelt before, but while the history of the Democratic Party is suddenly such a hot topic in hip-hop it may or may not have been coincidental that she decided to remind us now.
“Empathy” is now suddenly a West buzzword, but SZA isn’t buying it.
Smith’s adoration of West has been long established, but the timing and succession of these Tweets seem like an unmisable subtweet.
Actually, we’re not sure quite what this means, but just for your information, here’s M.I.A.’s take.
Doesn’t need much explanation.
Kim Kardashian West?