People Slammed Kanye West for His Viral Tweet: This Is ‘Not a Joke’

Kanye West is never exactly out of the headlines, but there are times when his actions send him trending across social media platforms. His announcement that he would be running for President of the United States is just the most recent in a long list of outrageous behaviors to bring the rapper under immense public scrutiny. At this point, no one is surprised by West’s outrageous commentary or his bizarre political rants. He has even mentioned his goal of running for President in the past, so the move wasn’t out of nowhere. 

Critics, however, are not pleased with West’s attempt to draw attention to himself during such a serious political moment in American history. They feel he is making a mockery of one of the most pivotal times in the country’s political identity. 

Kanye West resting his face on his hand, looking off camera
Kanye West | Saul Loeb/Getty Images

Kanye West’s political views are unique 

It can be hard to pin down just what West believes from a political perspective. He has always been outspoken and vocal about his views, but those ideas have not fallen into any clear political party. Early in his career, West appeared on a live telethon alongside comedian Mike Myers to help benefit the victims of Hurricane Katrina. West made headlines for going off script and declaring on live TV that then-President George Bush didn’t care about Black people. His lyrics at this stage of his career often made comments about racial injustice and inequality as well. 

Later, however, West denounced his statements about Bush as a “victim mentality.” He has since stated that Black History Month is “torture porn” and that slavery was a “choice.” His views on race have been further complicated by his support of President Donald Trump, who has a negative 40 net approval rating among Black voters, according to Newsweek — a sharp decrease precipitated by Trump’s response to the pandemic. West’s announcement that he would be running for President included stepping away from his former support of Trump. “I’m taking the red hat off, with this interview,” West explained. 

Kanye West does seem serious about the announcement

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West has made it clear in the past that he does not identify as a Democrat, but it doesn’t seem that he fully identifies as a Republican. He said that he’d be running for President as a representative of the “Birthday Party,” which did not help bolster his claims that he was serious about his bid for the White House. 

As easy as it would be to simply dismiss West’s run for the presidency as nonsense, it does seem like he is legitimately interested in running. The odds are not in the rapper’s favor, however. With only four months to go until the election, West is up against some serious practical hurdles when it comes to having his name on the ballot. 

The Intelligencer reports that West has hired campaign operatives to do the groundwork in an attempt to get enough signatures to be put on the ballot in states like Florida and South Carolina — battleground states where the outcome of the national election is expected to be decided. Despite some reports that West had already dropped out — bolstered by the temporary deletion of his social media accounts — West appears to be moving ahead and officially registered to be on the ballot in Oklahoma on July 15, paying the $35,000 filing fee to make sure his name is included. 

Many people are upset about Kanye West’s presidential bid 

West may be serious about his bid, but people are not happy about it. A Reddit thread dedicated to the original announcement is overwhelmingly full of commenters who do not want to see West’s name on the ballot. Some see his efforts as nefariously supporting Donald Trump. “He’s pulling this stunt to pull the minorities vote from Democrats to help [T]rump,” one commenter wrote. “Trump wants Kanye to split the votes so Biden loses,” another added. 

Others are simply frustrated by what they see as a publicity stunt in the middle of such an important election. “People scrape by and sacrifice so much to work in this world because they legitimately believe in trying to make America a better place for everyone and Kanye just treats it as a joke to feed his own ego,” one wrote. 

Meanwhile, sources told the Intelligencer that West’s family is concerned he may be having a bipolar incident and need mental health treatment. Commenters on the Reddit thread were already dismissing that excuse. “I’m sick of people using mental health as an excuse for his actions. As he just gets to act whatever the way he wants, because of it. We already have an egomaniac in the White House so no thanks.”