What’s Up With Ye?

Kanye Denies The Holocaust Amongst Other Things


Teenage Kanye wearing a shirt opposing Nazi’s

Maesyn L. Pollock, Hour 1

In the song ‘Flashing Lights’, Kanye West proclaims that his hatred for paparazzi is more than his hatred for Nazi’s. At the time listeners most likely thought of this line as overdramatic and a clever rhyming scheme if anything, but based on recent events, this could really be the case. Despite his talents and critically acclaimed success, due to his recent anti semitic remarks Kanye West’s career -at least to the general public- is likely over.

Ye’s Claims

In the past few months, Kanye West has been the culprit to many anti semitic remarks. Ye’s comments range from a more subdued, “I just think that’s what they’re about, is making money.” in regards to Jared Kushner while appearing on Fox news, to straight up saying, “I like Hitler.” on Infowars with Alex Jones and Nick Fuentes (An infamous white supremacist). Later on in the Infowars interview he identifies himself as a Nazi and denies the Holocaust.  Due to his recent remarks, many brands, such as Adidas and Vogue, have canceled their collaborations with Kanye. According to Forbes, his net worth has also gone down from $2 billion to $400 million as of October 2022.

While Kanye has admitted that he is bipolar, mental illness does not excuse this extreme prejudice. After posting an image depicting a swastika entangled with the star of david, Kanye’s Twitter account has been resuspended (Was before suspended, then unsuspended when Elon Musk became CEO) and there have even been rumors circulating that his music will be removed from Spotify. These rumors are most likely false seeing as even Charles Manson has music on the streaming service. 

Past Controversies

Kanye West at the 2019 Met Gala

Kanye is no stranger to controversy. Among the years he has been able to aggravate perhaps every community in the world. In 2005, during a televised telethon benefit for victims of hurricane Katrina, Kanye blurted out, “George Bush doesn’t care about black people.”. Then during Taylor Swift’s acceptance speech at the 2009 VMAs, he interrupted her on stage saying, “Yo Taylor, I’m really happy for you, I’mma let you finish, but Beyoncé has one of the best videos of all time. One of the best videos of all time!”. Another infamous Kanye moment was in 2018 when he said that the 400 year enslavement of Africans “[sounds] like a choice” while pushing his support of then U.S. president Donald Trump. 

One of the more recent controversies has been Kanye’s response to his ex-wife’s (Kim Kardashian) relationship with Pete Davidson. Throughout 2021 and 2022, Kanye would publicly lash out and threaten Pete Davidson on social media. The 64th Grammy’s even went on to drop him as a performer due to his online harassment. I could go on and on about the trouble Ye’s gotten into but you get the point. 

A Fan’s Perspective

Senior Keagan Anfinson has been basically a lifelong fan of Kanye and even considers him to be the greatest music producer ever. However this admiration doesn’t stop him from realizing the harm Ye has done. When asked if he has been listening to him less often than he used to, Keagan replied, “Very much so. Last year I was in [the] point one percent of Kanye listeners. This year he wasn’t even one of my top artists.” Keagan is of course referring to the beloved Spotify Wrapped stats. “..I still think Kanye’s got genius music making skills, but I’ve been backing off his music lately. [Still], Kanye is the greatest producer of all time.” It’s pretty obvious that, in this case at least, Kanye fans are fans of the music and not the man.

I Miss The Old Kanye

Is it fair to say that all of Ye’s music is tarnished by his deplorable views? Maybe, maybe not. It’s a pretty gray area. For instance, ‘Touch The Sky’, which came out 17 years before Kanye’s Infowars appearance, is a genuinely uplifting song about overcoming challenges and finding success. And if your worried about giving money to Kanye by streaming him, Spotify doesn’t pay their artists anyways.

However, if you wanna completely cut Kanye out of your diet but just can’t get enough of that Ye instrumental sauce, you could just listen to the songs he samples. Sure they may not have the exact same ‘umpf’ but they’re still bangers. Curtis Mayfields ‘Move On Up’ (‘Touch The Sky’ sample) has the same themes as ‘Touch The Sky’ and some may argue that it is even more inspiring. Plus it’s got a pretty nice trumpet solo.

Ye’s career with the general public is most likely done due to the irredeemable claims he has made resulting in the loss of both brand collaborations and billions of dollars as well as his presence on social media. Antisemitism is something that should be taken seriously and the response to Kanye’s claims is well deserved.