The Voice of the Wildcats

The Paw Print

The Voice of the Wildcats

The Paw Print

The Voice of the Wildcats

The Paw Print

Kanye West: Legacy Beyond Repair?

Kanye+West+Ye+wearing+a+white+lives+matter+shirt
Ye & Edward Berthelot
Kanye West “Ye” wearing a white lives matter shirt

Kanye West, now known as “Ye,” has been known as one of the greats in rap with his astounding music and production, but most recently he has ruined his reputation with many by making anti-semitic comments and racist remarks.  

Before all of his controversy, Ye was a rap icon loved by his fans and many others in the music industry, as well as one of the most influential people in the world. He has won 273 awards for his music with 21 Grammys, and he is one of the top winners in Grammy history.

Recently, Kanye has been in the news for the wrong reasons for supporting the beliefs of Nazis and white supremacists on Twitter and podcasts. As a result, most people have turned on him, seeing him now as a racist anti-semitic rapper who has seemingly gone crazy. People of the Jewish community at Woodside High School are baffled and offended by Ye’s remarks against the Jewish community. Raphael Kauffmann, a Jewish music production teacher, expressed his disappointment in regard to Ye’s anti-semitic comments.

Kanye West’s “Ye” Anti-Semitic Tweet

“The comments themselves are abhorrent, insulting, degrading, and just sad,” Kauffmann said.

Both his fans and people around the world all knew Kanye was always involved in some type of drama, whether it was him rudely interrupting Taylor Swift’s acceptance speech during the VMA’s, or wearing a “white lives matter” t-shirt during a private show. 

“Well, some of my opinions of Kanye before and after remain the same,” Kauffman said. “I think he’s a brilliant producer of hip hop. I think he’s had a huge influence on modern music. And as a creative person, he’s really impressive.”

His art was never deterred because of his drama and was still recognized as one of the best producers in the world.

 “I often try to have a conversation with students about separating the art from the artist and, I’m not so sure that it’s a clean thing that we can always do,” Kauffman said.

When you learn something new like producing or a sport you go to learn from the best. You learn from their expertise, not their weaknesses. This could be correlated back to Ye and his talent in producing, but his distasteful views on the Jewish community is difficult to look past. Kauffman thinks you should learn about his talents and expertise in producing but not his political views and beliefs.

“Have faith in expertise; if I want to learn how to chop up samples I’ll go to Kanye,” Kauffman said,  “If I want to discuss issues of race, gender, socio-economics, in the political sphere, I won’t go to Kanye, I’ll go to someone like Cornel West.”

Some people try to find some reasoning behind why Kanye has seemingly become an anti-semitic racist out of nowhere. Some people have theorized that his mental health issues like his bipolar disorder have been the leading factor in his recent behavior. His fans believe this is a valid excuse for him saying “death con 3 on JEWISH PEOPLE” on Twitter, and other things in that realm. Others believe this behavior can’t be excused. Olivia Reif, a Jewish sophomore, believes this to be true. 

“I’ve heard that he definitely has some issues,” Reif said, “I don’t think it’s an excuse. I think that it’s something that he needs to get help with, but you can’t really excuse saying things like that.”

Even after Ye’s anti-semitic comments and racist remarks, people from both sides still feel sympathy for him because of the loss of his mother and the loss of the love of his life. Kauffman feels a small level of sympathy for him.

“I feel bad that he doesn’t have a circle of people around him who love him enough to get him some help,” Kauffman said.

Reif shares a similar thought about Ye and his mental health issues, and if it really excuses his behavior and comments made.

 “I hope he gets some help,” Reif said, “ I feel bad that he’s been put in that position, but I don’t think it’s an excuse.”

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About the Contributor
Albert Cruz, Staff Writer
Albert Cruz is a junior and first-year journalist. He enjoys writing about sports and entertainment. He hopes to improve his writing skills this year as a journalist. He enjoys sleeping, playing baloncesto, and listening to music.