As the November primary nears and the candidates begin to campaign for our votes through television and online ads, another candidate emerged. On July 4th via Twitter, Kanye West announced his run with a post about unification, vision, and building the future. The internet was abuzz with some vowing to vote for Kanye, while others pointed out his relationship with and past support of the current president. The debate became about the lesser of two evils with Kanye coming out on top for some, but the questions remain. Will Kanye West make it onto the ballot? More importantly, is he mentally fit to hold office?
Over the weekend, Kanye held a rally in North Charleston, South Carolina, where he spoke about various issues. Wearing a bulletproof vest, he stood before hundreds of what appeared to be supporters. He began to go on a tirade about abortion, international trade, his licensing deal with Adidas, and religion. When he got to the issue of race relations, he made a comment viewed by many as an attack on the civil rights leader Harriet Tubman. Kanye stated that Tubman “never actually freed the slaves; she just had the slaves go work for other white people.” His comment did not sit well with the crowd, and many yelled their dislike at him on the stage. It was a stark reminder of his previous comments about slavery being a choice.
At one point, Kanye yelled at a young lady named Iesha Mars, who was in attendance. Ms. Mars later took to IG Live to discuss the situation. Iesha Mars says that Kanye invited several people onto the stage to ask questions. When she asked a question about gun control, Ms. Mars states, “he did not answer. He just spewed out random facts and bragged about himself.” She then says that she was kicked off stage for correcting him whenever he used incorrect facts saying that “he has a large platform and he shouldn’t be saying incorrect things to people that look up to him.” Ms. Mars also noted that she was interrogated and berated by Kanye for interrupting him. However, a white girl also interrupted him several times, and he brought her up on stage and hugged her.
After Sunday’s rally, Kanye took to Twitter and posted several comments, including one hinting that his wife Kim Kardashian was worried about his behavior and had attempted to have him institutionalized. He also commented that the movie Get Out was about him and expressed his love for his children, a topic that brought him to tears during his rally. Since family, friends, and fans have expressed concern about Kanye’s mental stability and call for him to get the help he needs. Reports Monday state Kanye did not make it onto the ballot in South Carolina after his rally. Oklahoma appears to be the next stop on his campaign trail.
Paula J. Shelton is a freelance writer in Chicago. Follow her on social @beboldshineon.