In a new interview with the Wall Street Journal, West compares the backlash he faced for wearing a Make America Great Again hat to racial profiling. “It reminded me of how I felt as a black guy before I was famous,” the musician said.
“When I would walk in a restaurant and people would look at you like you were going to steal something,” he continued. “‘This is your place, Ye, don’t talk about apparel. This is your place, Ye, you’re black, so you’re a Democrat.’”
The “Yeezus” rapper has had a varied political past. When New Orleans was yet to receive substantial federal assistance in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, West announced on TV: “George Bush doesn’t care about black people”.
West has also faced criticism in the past for his support of conservative black activist Candice Owens, and also for suggesting that slavery “was a choice”. He would later apologise for his wording.
In the Wall Street Journal interview, the Yeezy CEO also opened up about working closely with Trump to help free the rapper A$AP Rocky from a Swedish jail, after he was detained on aggravated assault charges last summer.
Trump tweeted about the case following discussions with West.
“Just spoke to @KanyeWest about his friend A$AP Rocky’s incarceration,” Trump wrote. “I will be calling the very talented Prime Minister of Sweden to see what we can do about helping A$AP Rocky.”
West previously earned headlines this week (24 March) after his long-time conflict with Taylor Swift resurfaced. An extended version of their infamous phone call concerning the lyrics of his “Famous” was leaked, leading to West’s wife Kim Kardashian to defend her husband.