TMZ Staffer Goes Off on Kanye West Following His Controversial ‘Slavery Was a Choice’ Comment
After his viral Twitter rants last week, Kanye West stopped by the TMZ offices on Tuesday to film TMZ Live and made even more controversial comments, this time about slavery. One staffer went off after the Kanye West slavery comment, and his response to the hip-hop star is pretty epic.
When West was asked about his recent support of Trump, the response that followed somehow morphed into the concept of freedom, prompting some controversial words about the United States’ history with slavery.
“When you hear about slavery for 400 years. For 400 years?! That sounds like a choice. Like, you were there for 400 years and it’s all of you all? Like, we’re mentally in prison. Like, slavery goes too direct to the idea of blacks,” West said. “So prison is something that unites us as one race, blacks and whites being one race. We’re the human race.”
One TMZ staffer couldn’t stand by West’s controversial comments, and he responded after West addressed the entire room of people.
In the video above, West asks the room, “Do you feel that I am being free and thinking free?”
“I actually don’t think you’re thinking anything,” TMZ staffer Van Lathan fired back. “I think what you’re doing right now is actually the absence of thought. And the reason that I feel like that is, Kanye, you’re entitled to your opinion — you’re entitled to believe whatever you want — but there’s fact and real-life consequence behind everything you just said. While you are making music and being an artist and living the life that you’ve earned by being a genus, the rest of us in society have to deal with these threats to our lives. We have to deal with the marginalization that has come from the 400 years of slavery that you said, for our people, was ‘a choice.’ Frankly I’m disappointed, I’m appalled and, brother, I’m unbelievably hurt by the fact that you have morphed into something, to me, that’s not real.”
Lathan isn’t the only one calling out West. Janelle Monáe, who just came out as pansexual, responded to West’s thoughts that black people are using slavery as a tool to play the victim when she stopped by Hot 97.
“Well, one, I don’t agree with him if that is true and he is supporting anybody who thinks that,” Monáe said. “I believe in free thinking. I don’t believe in free thinking if it is rooted in or at the expense of the oppressed. If your free thinking is used as fuel by oppressors to continue to oppress Black people or minorities, I think it’s bullshit and it’s not OK.”
Janelle Monáe said everything that needed to be said regarding Kanye’s views pic.twitter.com/1yXEPJcnVb
— Chris (@chrstnavelli) April 25, 2018
And West, who tweeted out support for gun control activist Emma Gonzalez didn’t get the favor returned. After he tweeted a photo of Gonzalez with the caption “My hero Emma,” she later tweeted a photo with the words “My hero James Shaw Jr.” (James Shaw Jr is the man who fought off a gunman at a Nashville Waffle House in April.)
my hero James Shaw Jr. pic.twitter.com/BRnuYEURdv
— Emma González (@Emma4Change) April 29, 2018