Kanye West Says Harriet Tubman Never Freed Slaves, Had Them Go Work for Other White People
It looks like Kanye West is really serious about this whole being president of the United States thing and his inaugural rally featured some wild moments.
After some pump faking, ’Ye held his first presidential rally at the Exquis Event Center in North Charleston, S.C. on Sunday (July 19). The Chicago rapper came out donning a bulletproof vest that read "Security" across the front. Kanye was all over the place in his speeches, talking religion, politics, abortion, wealth and seemingly whatever came to his mind. He even got into arguments with people in the crowd, and kicked one man out who kept interrupting him.
Yeezy even cried at one point. However, one of the most eye-raising moments came when ’Ye discredited the efforts of Harriet Tubman, the lauded abolitionist who is credited with running multiple missions to free slaves using the Underground Railroad. While trying to make a point about Tubman, he stopped mid-sentence and said, "Well, Harriet Tubman never actually freed the slaves. She just had the slaves go work for other White people."
He paused for several awkward seconds afterward, and an eerie silence went over the crowd. An audibly confused "What?" could be heard from someone in attendance. Kanye then moved on to another topic.
People were understandably upset over Kanye trying to tarnish the name of an American hero. "Kanye West does not have enough honor in his pinky fingernail to be deserving of even speaking our Great Ancestor Harriet Tubman's name," one person commented on Twitter. "I'm tired of the excuses about his mental health. He is irresponsible, reckless, ignorant and foolish. Cue Kim Kardashian for clean up! Ugh!"
"@kimkardashianwest @kimkardashian can you do an involuntary commitment to a mental hospital on behalf of the country right now?" someone else noted on Twitter. "It's all fun and games until Kanye really does something to hurt himself. He really needs help and anyone can see that. Harriet Tubman."
Another person posted, "I hope Harriet Tubman comes back during the rapture just to whoop Kanye’s ass. Tf is wrong with him?!?!"
Some fans were not as hard on Kanye, saying his statement had a different meaning.
"When Kanye said 'Harriet Tubman didn’t actually freed the slaves, she just had them go work for other white people' he didn’t lie," a Twitter user noted. "Black companies weren’t established at that time and who else would have given them jobs back then? Not white people?..we need to think sometimes."
It's safe to say, Kanye's first rally turned out to be a little controversial.
Yeezy has said he wanted to run for president since 2015, but recently renewed his desire to be the next Commander-in-Chief earlier this month with the tweet, "We must now realize the promise of America by trusting God, unifying our vision and building our future. I am running for president of the United States 🇺🇸! #2020VISION."
Since then, he's dipped his toe in and out of the campaign pool, and caused controversy with some statements about Planned Parenthood. Last week, it was reported Kanye had hired an 180-person presidential campaign staff only to bow out of the campaign before it really even got started. The next day, he kept the campaign alive by filing with the federal election committee. West is officially on the ballot in Oklahoma, running independently under The Birthday Party.
It looks like Kanye will be handling double duty as he hits the road as a politician and promotes his new album. On Saturday (July 18), ’Ye posted then deleted an announcement about his new album, which, according to the post, is coming out next Friday (July 24). "New album DONDA coming July 24," he wrote as the caption for a picture of a handwritten tracklist for the upcoming LP. The new album will feature 20 songs including the previously released singles "Wash Us in the Blood" featuring Travis Scott and the title track.
Check out reactions to Kanye's Harriet Tubman statement and his entire rally speech below.
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