Can You Separate The Art From The Artist?

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We all know that celebrities are people and people make mistakes, but how many mistakes can a celebrity make before you stop giving them your supporting?

For years people have continued to support big name stars even after seeing them do negative things. For example, R. Kelly had been accused of having sexual relations with minors, creating child pornography, and even creating a sex cult, but people, especially the ones in the black community, still choose to support his music career. For many years it has been said that Bill Cosby has drugged and sexually assaulted women, but he is still being defended by supporters eve with his recent conviction. And what about Kanye West? Even after his tweets about supporting Trump he still has fans anxiously waiting for his new music to drop. The point I’m trying to make is there comes a time when supporting certain celebrities should cease.

In recent news, Kanye landed himself in the spotlight for tweeting and saying things that pissed many of his fans off. During a TMZ interview the rapper said that slavery was a choice. His exact words were: “When you hear about slavery for 400 years — for 400 years? That sounds like a choice.” He added, “It’s like we’re mentally imprisoned.” A TMZ employee, Van Lathan, was present during Kanye’s rant and strongly disagreed with the statement. He clapped back saying, “I think what you’re doing right now is actually the absence of thought. And the reason why I feel like this is because, Kanye, you’re entitled to your opinion. You’re entitled to believe whatever you want.” Lathan said that he was “disappointed,” “appalled,” and “unbelievably hurt” by who Kanye has become. Kanye later took to Twitter in an attempt to justify his statement by tweeting, “The reason why I brought up the 400 years point is because we can’t be mentally imprisoned for another 400 years. We need free thought now. Even the statement was an example of free thought. It was just an idea.”

I have personally been a Kanye fan for years, but at this point I think it’s time to stop supporting him as an artist. I’m clearly not the only person to have this thought. Many Kanye supporters and other celebrities took to Twitter and other social media to display their disgust of his actions. “We Need To Go Forward Not Backwards,” tweeted Jaden Smith. J. Cole tweeted a Nas quote which read, “‘These are our heroes’ – @nas”

If this is Kanye’s tactic for getting streams on his next album, I don’t think it’s working out very well. Whether you choose to still support Kanye or not, we can all agree on one thing that Lathan said: “There are real-world, real-life consequence behind everything.”


By Cierra Lemott, Sophomore, Gwendolyn Brooks College Prep

Instagram/Snapchat: @cece.kodak

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