Kanye West is hands down one of the most successful artists, creatives, and individuals of our time. Over the years, he has created quite an enormous and progressive brand through collaborations. However, Ye has also always been expressive and controversial. Whether it be through fashion or music, Ye has always made it a point to make a statement; most of the time, however, he’s quite offensive. His ranting has led to multiple scandals being tagged with the artist’s brand. He has had “beef” with fellow artists, friends, business associates, politicians, and even family.
HOW IT STARTED
YE VS TAYLOR SWIFT
Kanye and Taylor Swift’s bad blood first became news when Kanye ambushed Taylor Swift during her Video of the Year acceptance speech in September 2009 at the MTV VMAs. It was later confirmed by Swift that he had apologized. However, after years of tension and a long-awaited reconciliation, the pair seem no closer to making up than they were following Kanye’s 2016 song release, “Famous.” The song was off his The Life of Pablo album (which made jabs at Taylor). His estranged wife, Kim Kardashian, claimed that Swift knew of West’s plans to release the track; there were also leaks of a phone call between West and Swift discussing the song before its release.
YE VS EVERYONE
Kanye went on several concert rants and interviews in 2013. West claimed he was a modern-day Shakespeare and Walt Disney, comparing himself to Steve Jobs. He also demanded investments from Google for his ideas. Ye also admitted that he was in debt. Nike Inc. took the brunt of West’s firestorm as he said he was not receiving royalties in his deal with the sportswear company because he wasn’t an athlete. He also spoke of being marginalized and forced to work like he was only a rapper and not a creative, and being forced to only work on T-shirts.
In 2010, he made similar remarks during a speech he gave for the Accessories Council’s annual ACE Awards. West said, “Why, if someone is good in one field, can they not be accepted or given the slightest opportunity to express and be creative in other fields?”
KANYE WEST’S ANTI-SEMITISM
Kanye West’s Anti-Semitism, also known as Kanye West’s Going “Death Con 3” On Jewish People and Kanye West on George Floyd, refers to a string of controversies involving Kanye West that followed a problematic tweet sent by him in early October 2022 and alluded to his belief in right-wing conspiracy theories. Kanye’s tweet was removed from the platform within 24 hours. However, it raised questions regarding Kanye’s mental health, his apparent anti-Semitism, and his then-recent “White Lives Matter” shirt controversy. The tweet led to Kanye being banned from Twitter. Later, an ex-TMZ staffer accused him of supporting Adolf Hitler and Nazis during his “Slavery Was a Choice” rant in 2018 at the TMZ offices. Also, an episode of LeBron James’ HBO show, The Shop, had to be scrapped due to Kanye’s appearance in which he doubled down on his then-recent anti-Semitic remarks.
KANYE VS GEORGE FLOYD’S FAMILY
The family of George Floyd announced a few days ago that they would file a $250 million lawsuit against Ye, the rapper formerly known as Kanye West, following comments he made about Floyd’s death on the podcast Drink Champs. It had previously been ruled by the Hennepin County Medical Examiner’s Office that George Floyd’s death was a homicide, caused by Derek Chauvin’s kneeling on Floyd’s neck for over eight minutes. But Ye, who was a guest on last weekend’s episode of the podcast hosted by rapper N.O.R.E and DJ EFN, put forth the idea that it wasn’t Chauvin who caused Floyd’s death but that he died from fentanyl use. The family seeks damages for defamation, harassment, and more.
The lawsuit will be filed by Roxie Washington, the mother of Gianna Floyd, George Floyd’s only daughter and the sole beneficiary of his estate. Washington plans to sue Ye, his business partners, and associates for harassment, misappropriation, defamation, and infliction of emotional distress. According to a statement released by Washington’s attorneys, they are requesting $250 million in damages. Host N.O.R.E called into Hot 97’s Ebro in the Morning to talk about the episode and issued an apology. “I’m sorry. I can’t sit there and say, “That’s only Kanye West, it’s only what he said. But I have a responsibility when I have an audience. When I watched myself, I was embarrassed. I was like, “Wait a minute, you just let him say that? I’m irresponsible for letting it go. ” He said.
Ye’s episode of Drink Champs has since been pulled off the channel.
YE VS GABRIELLE KAREFA-JOHNSON
In 2022, we once again experienced Kanye’s multiple rants. However, this one has taken the industry by storm. Kanye sparked outrage during Paris Fashion Week. Ye was immediately called out by Vogue’s Fashion Editor, Gabrielle Karefa-Johnson. West sparked controversy in his black long-sleeve tee with its statement, which is considered a “hate slogan” by the Anti-Defamation League. Gabrielle was shocked by the rapper’s incorporation of “White Lives Matter” shirts into his latest Yeezy collection. She then went on to speak out about her dislike of the controversy after the show. Kanye then specifically targeted Karefa-Johnson, mocking and insulting her appearance in her Instagram pictures.
One of Ye’s posts featured a full-body photo of Karefa-Johnson, who’s overseen editorial content for Vogue and other publications, smiling into the camera. She was sporting a long brown trench coat, lace-up boots, and a bright blue handbag. “This is not a fashion person,” he captioned the photo, posted the day after his Yeezy Paris Fashion Week show.
The t-shirt look was also featured in an image uploaded to Twitter by conservative commentator Candace Owens. She also wore the same shirt in white to the show. The front of the shirt featured Pope John Paul II and the words “Seguiremos Tu Ejemplo,” meaning “We Will Follow Your Example.”
YE VS PIERS MORGAN
On Wednesday, October 19, Ye called Piers Morgan a “Karen” during an interview on Morgan’s TalkTV show. The interview was to iron out and discuss Ye’s previous anti-Semitic comments. West appeared on the show after facing backlash over anti-Semitic comments he made on the Drink Champs podcast last week. “You don’t hold accountability for my pain, you’re being a Karen,” Kanye told Morgan.
West was blocked from Twitter and Instagram earlier this month following vile anti-Semitic rants. This violated network policies and caused major backlash from the public. He shared a since-deleted screenshot of an iMessage exchange in which he accused Sean “Diddy” Combs of being controlled by Jews. The owner of Instagram did not specify what was objectionable about the content or what kind of restriction was imposed. However, screenshots confirm the post was another rant against Jewish people.