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The Pioneer Press

The student news site of Jonathan Alder High School

The Pioneer Press

The student news site of Jonathan Alder High School

The Pioneer Press

What’s up with Kanye West?

Kanye West at the 2009 Tribeca Film Festival. Kanye West at the 2009 Tribeca Film Festival by David Shankbone is licensed under David Shankbone, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons.

Throughout Kanye West’s career he has stirred up controversy and made comments publicly and online that have completely damaged his reputation. From making comments on live TV saying, “George Bush doesn’t care about black people” to interrupting award shows, he has made a lot of mistakes–and keeps on making them. 

West was born in Chicago on June 8, 1977 and began his career at a young age during the early 2000s creating a name for himself after releasing “The College Dropout,” his first studio album. This was followed up by “Late Registration” and “Graduation” which are noted as some of West’s greatest albums.  After that, he released his album “808s & Heartbreaks.” 

The following year at the VMAs, he went on stage and disrupted the show, taking the microphone out of Taylor Swift’s hand and claiming that “Beyonce had one of the best videos of all time,” in response to Taylor winning the award for Best Music Video that year.

This began West’s sudden downhill spiral. The sudden burst out on stage seemed rude and would never have been committed by anyone else, so why did he do this? It was noted that night that West was visually intoxicated and was captured in photos holding a bottle of Hennessy passing it around in the crowd and slowly becoming more and more intoxicated throughout the night. with multiple people beginning to think that West wasn’t as ordinary as he may have seemed.

This incident was followed up two days later with a phone call to Swift where he apologized for his disruption of the night and also posting on his personal blog ”IM SOOOOOO SORRY.” After that incident, West had seemed to be fine for a while, but his antics sparked right back up in 2020 when he ran for President.

After vocally supporting then-candidate Donald Trump and being seen in multiple photos with him and supporting his outlandish opinions, West went on to run for president having his own private campaigns and lost in the general election in November

Not even a year later, West went on to make anti semitic remarks that shook a whole culture. West tweeted that “I’m a bit sleepy tonight but when I wake up I’m going death con 3 on jewish people.” This comment left many people distraught with it ending in West being banned from X only to be unbanned one year later. But is that all that could have been done for his remarks when he made a very clear threat on the Jewish community?

Flash forward to today with West releasing his album with Ty Dolla Sign, “Vultures.” After delaying it three times, it was finally released on Feb. 10 and made its way to number thirty four on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100, but this album wasn’t without its problems. Lines in certain songs are controversial–West mentions his anti semitism in a negative way, referring to himself as Bill Cosby, and calling himself Ye-Kelly, referencing R&B singer R Kelly. 

Between this and his anti-semitic actions, it’s clear that West has not thought through his comments and public scenes and needs to handle these types of comments with more care.

All these actions have all come with their own problems and responses from West but the question is, does West have any empathy for what he’s said? As someone who has listened to West’s music and enjoys it, I can only hope that his apologies and statements are true and meaningful and that West is able to learn from his actions and grows not only as an artist but also as a person.

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About the Contributor
Derek Lee Rodriguez
Derek Lee Rodriguez, staff writer
Derek Rodriguez is a sophomore in his first year of journalism. Derek is the student director for the play and in his free time he enjoys watching movies,playing dnd,and watching his favorite show community. Derek has been described by people as charismatic,friendly,and stoic at times. Derek can be spotted around school with his film and comic shirts, his messenger bag across his chest, and his curly brown hair.

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  • C

    Caitlyn FeayMar 8, 2024 at 10:34 AM

    Great article Derek. Really nice job wrapping up multiple things he’s done in your article and explaining. I also like how you ended it, calling for change. Keep up the great work!!