By Maurice Bobb
Right wing republicans and tea party activists aren’t the only ones using the dismissive portmanteau “NObama.” You can now add Kanye West to that list. The Yeezus MC visited Philadelphia’s Hot 107.9 Monday and let it be known that he’s done dealing with the POTUS. “I’m not gonna mention him no more, I’m past that,” ‘Ye said. “That’s out my thoughts. That’s lowering my priority of thinking at this point.”
Radio hosts Shamara and Laiya didn’t let Yeezy off the hook, though. They prodded further, asking if he’d ever break bread with the Commander in Chief.
“Oh, you talking about how he use to come and visit me and my mama and tell me he’s about to run for president?” Kanye answered. “I just think that we’re pop icons, and the president likes to use that type of thing just to be down. People was fine with me being everyone’s punching bag for about five years — ‘This is the person we love to hate, so if you want to distract people from everything that’s going on … just say you hate Kanye and there’s going be 30 other people who say they hate Kanye.’ That was kind of my position in culture and he kind of used that too — ‘Oh, he’s a jackass’ — because that’s how the world felt. I don’t care if someone’s the president or not. I care about thoughts and how you helping people and what you bring to the world.”
“I put a Confederate Flag on my merchandise, that’s fun for me,” Kanye said. “People got bills, don’t nobody care about the Confederate Flag to that type of level. I know that this symbol means this, but I’m just gon’ pay all your bills for one year and I’ma ask you: does it mean that same thing? It’s not that conversation of racism and symbols, but more of being free as an artist. As an artist, I can use whatever I want to use to create with.”
The Reverend Al Sharpton raised his usual ruckus about the use of the flag, but Kanye, who spoke to the Harvard Graduate School of Design in Boston yesterday, mentioned that he put in a call to the political activist via Russell Simmons to quell his concerns.
“I called Al Sharpton and I called Russell to call him,” he said. “Tell Al Sharpton to call me before he go out talking to people. You don’t never know what I’m trying to do. The day I was about to sign my deal finally, I was like this is what happens. Black people stopping other black people from getting checks.”
The “New Slaves” rapper mentioned a deal he signed a week ago that would allow him to finally create an entire clothing line, but didn’t elaborate further. He did, however, expound on his creativity, his appreciation for Tyler, the Creator, why he wears masks and why he loves to live inside society’s backlash.
Creativity: “The more and more creative I feel and the more creativity I get out, the younger I feel so mentally, I’m at a place where I’m three years old now. When you’re three years old, you have less inhibitions about what you drawing, you just draw.”
Tyler/Ma$e: “He went to film school. When he has an idea, he shoots exactly what’s in his head and it comes out concise. It’s the same reason I like Ma$e. I like how that man can just get his point across. He gets to the point so quick.
Masks: “When I put that on I feel like I can do anything. That’s what I want creatively. Halloween used to be a day, now it’s like a week.”
Backlash: “People are so afraid of the idea of backlash but for me I have this opportunity and I think responsibility to live inside the backlash to show you, you can do what you want in this world. You are limitless. Like can’t nobody stop you. Perceptions and opinions can never matter, they’re not stronger than what you want to do for yourself.”