Kanye West, continuing his Twitter cyclone, spoke to TMZ Live this week and stirred up controversy for comments shared on free thought, Donald Trump, and slavery. On the latter, West stated that slavery "sounds like a choice."
Going further, he added, "When you hear about slavery for 400 years… like, you was there for 400 years and it's all of y'all?!" After that comment, including a poignant interjection by TMZ's Van Lathan, West took to Twitter to defend his view. "Of course I know that slaves did not get shackled and put on a boat by free will," he tweeted. "My point is for us to have stayed in that position even though the numbers were on our side means that we were mentally enslaved."
Still, even with his clarification, everyone had something to share about West's words. Of course, considering the weight of Ye's platform and the severity behind these said words, many held no punches.
I will always have love for @kanyewest but bro out here putting targets on our backs. Slavery was not a choice.— Talib Kweli Greene (@TalibKweli) May 1, 2018
Shame on you, @kanyewest + @rkelly. If you want to have a REAL conversation about lynching, get at me. Until then, have some respect and dignity for the dead. The murdered. You’ve gone beyond embarrassing yourselves. You’re both in territory that you don’t REALLY want to be in. pic.twitter.com/LXci0F0umc— Ava DuVernay (@ava) May 2, 2018
I’ve had it with @KanyeWest + @RKelly using the imagery of lynching as rebuttals re: their dastardly behavior. Evoking racial terrorism and murder for personal gain/blame is stratospheric in is audacity and ignorance. This is what lynching looked like. How dare they? pic.twitter.com/wfobcdjiKL— Ava DuVernay (@ava) May 2, 2018
I don’t have the energy for nonsense but Kanye saying slavery was a choice reiterates my previous statements about how dangerous his trite, shallow ramblings are. He is not a free thinker. He is a free moron who doesn’t read. Do not @ me.— roxane gay (@rgay) May 1, 2018
What in the Andy Kaufman is going on here? https://t.co/uvpJ37opyR— Question Love student of Roy Lee 8 (@questlove) May 1, 2018
Kanye’s rhetoric continues to fuel the racist right-wing folks who believe that black people are responsible for their oppression.— deray (@deray) May 1, 2018
There has NEVER been a moment in history when Black people didn't resist slavery. Some did it by jumping off ships. Some killed masters. Some ran away. Some did it through everyday forms of resistance. Slave masters didn't retire. Our resistance led to our freedom.— Marc Lamont Hill (@marclamonthill) May 2, 2018
Kanye's interview with TMZ came hours after he published his interview with Charlamagne Tha God. The nearly-two hour conversation touches on Ye's issues with JAY-Z, why President Donald Trump appeals to him, his history with Barack Obama, and more. For more on that interview, head here.