Should we boycott Kanye West’s next album?


Kanye West performing at a concert. Photo by Axel Antas-Bergkvist.

Arnav Kumar

First off, I will admit that I listened to “ye” and “Kids See Ghosts,” and thoroughly enjoyed both projects. At the time, Kanye’s antics didn’t deter me from listening to the album; he had a right to express himself freely, even if his opinions were wildly disappointing to his fan base. As someone who does not view the artist and his music in separate lights, I couldn’t justify boycotting his music just because we have different opinions of President Trump. In retrospect, it was wrong of me to brush off Kanye’s comment on slavery being a choice as a simple misstep.

Kanye’s recent calls to abolish the 13th amendment made me realize just how misguided and lost he is: it is time for me to re-evaluate my own morals when it comes to listening to his music. I refused to support XXXTentacion’s music because of the domestic abuse and assault allegations filed against him, so would it be hypocritical of me to let Kanye’s slavery comments slide? The two situations are definitely not parallel, but it is important to figure out just exactly where the buck ends for me.

After hearing that Kanye delayed the release of “Yandhi” to record in Africa, an anger boiled up in me; after criticizing African-Americans and diminishing the effects of slavery, Kanye decided to go to Africa to make his album. I bet he doesn’t even see the irony in that, but I do, and I am done with his antics: I will not be listening to “Yandhi” when it comes out because I cannot separate the music from the artist. Kanye’s actions scream inconsistency and pandering, and I simply cannot support a man who does not recognize the influence of his words. The worst part is that I’m not even sure if Kanye believes what he is saying, as I sometimes think that he is just trying to catch attention and create headlines.

I don’t have the authority to tell you whether you should listen to “Yandhi,” but I ask that you at least consider your values and morals before doing so.