After Kanye West went a daylong tweetstorm praising and defending President Trump, people are freaking out that he's been recruited by the far right.
On Wednesday, West tweeted, "you don't have to agree with trump but the mob can't make me not love him" and something about "dragon energy." He then tweeted a picture of a #MAGA hat signed by Trump, a screenshot of Trump retweeting West, and the complaint "Obama was in office for eight years and nothing in Chicago changed."
On Hot97's "Ebro in the Morning," host Ebro Darden said that West really does seem to love Trump — he literally said those words during a recent conversation the DJ had with the hip-hop star. "West said, "I do love Donald Trump. Quote: I love Donald Trump," said Darden. "Multiple times through the conversation he said, 'I just want to lead with love,' and I said, 'You're a liar, because the people you're aligning yourself with aren't leading with love.'"
Shortly after the 2016 election, West materialized at Trump Tower and posed for news cameras with the president-elect in the lobby. But things have been quiet on the Trump/Western front until this week, when West reactivated his Twitter account.
Kanye West and the far right
Besides his pro-Trump tweetstorm, West tweeted nine videos by "Dilbert" cartoonist Scott Adams. A men's-rights advocate, frequent Infowars guest and onetime Holocaust denier-by-tweet, Adams argued in the videos that Kanye West's success is proof that racism isn't really a problem and can be overcome by positive thinking, BuzzFeed News reports.
Several far-right figures then retweeted West's video posts, including widely reviled far-right spokesman Mike Cernovich, Infowars editor Paul Joseph Watson and far-right YouTuber Lauren Southern, who has been banned from the U.K. Gab, the far-right social network where some racist and anti-Semitic figures have fled after being banned by Twitter, then tweeted out a picture of that meeting between Trump and West at Trump Tower.
This raised alarm among the woke, who began to tweet that West had been "redpilled" by the far right. (A reference to "The Matrix," in which a red pill led to awareness and a blue pill to sedation; the far right adopted it to mean that a liberal has become more conservative.)
If you had "Kanye West gets redpilled" in your 2018 predictions bingo card, congratulations. pic.twitter.com/EmYEPhLkTT— neontaster (@neontaster) April 22, 2018
Now Kanye has been redpilled, he and Kim's next child is going to be called Declineofthe— Hari Kunzru (@harikunzru) April 27, 2018
And conservatives began to crow that this marked a turning of the tide toward the American right.
Today is just the beginning— Jack Posobiec (@JackPosobiec) April 25, 2018
Celebrities including John Legend and Chrissie Teigen argued with West, trying to bring him back into the light. Legend texted West privately, and West promptly tweeted screenshots of their chat, which promptly launched its own sub-controversy.
Somewhere along the line everyone forgot that West had initially reactivated his Twitter account to announce that he would soon be releasing new music and a book. Advertising exec Caroline McCarthy had a measured take on the week of drama. "I feel the need to issue a friendly reminder to my friends on both sides of the political aisle that Kanye is a master of attention and all this is part of it," she tweeted. "Lefties: Stop getting outraged about how he's allegedly 'redpilled.' Righties: No, he isn't really on your team now."
I feel the need to issue a friendly reminder to my friends on both sides of the political aisle that Kanye is a master of attention and all this is part of it. Lefties: Stop getting outraged about how he's allegedly "redpilled." Righties: No, he isn't really on your team now.— Caroline McCarthy (@caro) April 25, 2018