On Thursday’s I try to do a rundown of several important stories at the intersection of injustice, race, and culture. My struggle is never finding enough to talk about, but trying to zero in 3-4 important stories that are developing throughout the week.
First, I need us to talk about Kanye West for a moment. As you may have seen or heard, he’s gone full Trump on us. First, he tweeted how big of a fan he was of a prominent Trump supporter, then openly tweeted and told reporters how much he loves Donald Trump, then tweeted a picture of himself wearing his red Make America Great Again hat, then proudly tweeted an autograph from Donald Trump, then finally, late last night, said that Donald Trump was one of his favorite people in the world.
It’s gross. Chance the Rapper, who calls Kanye his mentor, then came to Kanye’s defense saying that all Black people don’t have to be Democrats. I’m sorry Chance, but that’s not the issue. The issue is not that Kanye isn’t a Democrat. Colin Kaepernick and Harry Belafonte aren’t Democrats. The beef is that Kanye has revealed to the world that he is a full blow Trump supporter. Throughout the day yesterday I had many people, particularly women, immigrants, and Muslims who wrote me to say how hurtful it was to see such a public person so warmly embrace Donald Trump.
And I agree with them. I think it’s insulting to chalk this up to mental illness. They aren’t doctors, but Kanye’s wife, Kim Kardashian, and Chance The Rapper, who said he has spoken to Kanye extensively recently, each said he is not mentally ill. They each said this is just how he feels. I also refuse to blame this on the man’s mother dying a decade ago. Every single one of us will have a mother who dies and that hasn’t made us become Trump supporters. I think Kanye is being sincere. He moved Calabasas, California, married a Kardashian, dyed his hair blonde, and became a Trump supporter.
I’m done with him. I don’t care what his next album sounds like.
Now let me give you an update on another story involving Waffle House. As you know, two different things happened at Waffle House’s this weekend. First, the mass shooting in Memphis. And thankfully, just about 8 hours after our segment this past Tuesday saying how outrageous it was that the shooter was going to be allowed to be bailed out, a judge revoked his bond. He will face justice. But I want to talk for a moment about the brutal police assault of Chikesia Clemons at another Waffle House outside of Mobile.
If you’ve seen the horrible video, you saw police threatening to break this young woman’s arm, then choking her, and ripping her clothes off, baring her body, right in the middle of the Waffle House. Throughout the whole ordeal Chikesia remained as calm as person possibly could, attempting to get the officer’s to even explain why they were arresting her – which they refused to do. I’m sorry to keep having to say this phrase, but this would not have happened to a white woman at Waffle House. Chikesia and her friend said the conflict began when the waitress at Waffle House tried to charge her $0.50 for utensils – which is outrageous.
When Chikesia demanded a number to customer service, the store manager then demanded that she leave and called the police. Of course she was unarmed and non-violent. And we must demand justice for this young woman. I’m grateful that my friend Attorney Ben Crump is representing her in this case, but Waffle House has not even remotely done right by her or by us in this situation.
Lastly, a recording was leaked yesterday by the New York Times from a confidential meeting between NFL players and team owners that took place several months ago to talk about player protests and injustice in America. I want to thank whoever recorded that meeting because it truly is a smoking gun on owner collusion to keep Colin Kaepernick out of the NFL. Several owners openly said that their fear of what Donald Trump would say or do if Kaepernick was in the league or if the protests continued were driving them to make the decisions they were making. Over and over again, team owners communicated how desperate they were for the protests to end – even outright asking the players to ask or demand that their teammates stop the protests.
And as you may know, to this very day the NFL has not only effectively banned Kaepernick from the league, but now every single NFL team is refusing to sign his teammate and fellow protestor, Eric Reid, one of the best young defenders in the NFL. It’s a disgrace.
I will absolutely be continuing my NFL boycott this year. They don’t deserve us.
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