“It’s hard to tell a self-made man that he’s wrong about himself,” said Talib Kweli in a newly released interview.
But that’s exactly what he’s been trying to do with Kanye West ever since the Chicago rapper said he loves Donald Trump and the mind of right-wing speaker Candace Owens.
Kweli revealed that piece of information during a conversation with Esquire and said he texted West about his alt-right political views but hasn’t changed his mind.
As some may know, Kweli has been a key figure in West’s career and was one of the first known rappers, along with Mos Def, to publicly embrace him.
The Chicago native also gave Kweli the biggest hit of his career when he produced “Get By” for him in 2001. In fact, that’s how the pair met, when Ye walked into the studio looking for Mos but saw Kweli instead and started working with him.
From there, the two continued to be on each other’s albums and created more gems like “Get Em High” and “In the Mood.”
But there might not be any more collaborations between the two, because Kweli said he can’t work with West until he changes his position on Trump and Owens.
“I would find it difficult working with Kanye on music right now with his position on Trump and Candace Owens and his repeating white supremacist lines on Black-on-Black crime and ‘slavery is a choice,'” he explained. “I love him as a man, and I love him as an artist, but I would find it difficult co-signing him right now until he walks some of that stuff back.”
As we previously reported, Kweli has been battling with white supremacists on social media since Trump announced that he was running for the Oval Office, and he’s also gone toe-to-toe with Owens’ supporters who’ve called him every racist name in the book.
So when Kweli first heard that West supported Owens and Trump, he sent him a text to let him know that Owens’ fans have been harassing him and even threatened his life. However, Kweli didn’t get the response that he was looking for, which saddened him.
“[Owens] was critical of things I was saying on Twitter … I was attacked on Twitter by racist Candace Owens fans,” Kweli recalled. “I had death threats, I had people calling me ‘n-gger,’ I had people calling me ‘monkey.’ When Kanye said, ‘I like how Candace Owens thinks,’ I texted him and explained to him who she was and how she comes after his friends. And his response to me was, ‘You know I love Donald Trump.’”
“That was a very disappointing and hurtful response,” the rapper added. “He’s a grown man. He has a right to say that. What was disappointing and hurtful about it was that I didn’t mention Donald Trump. But the fact that he needed to express his love for Donald Trump but not express any love for me was hurtful.”
Kweli also said that he’s been texting West information to challenge what he’s being told by white supremacist, who are weaponizing his words against Black folks. But even though Ye seems far gone at the moment, he refuses to give up on him.
“What I want Kanye to know — if he ever sees this — is that the love that he’s getting by parroting right-wing talking points, that love is not genuine,” he stated. “Those people would drop him in a heartbeat, and when they’re done using him as a weapon against his own people, his own people are here for him.”