Kanye West was left speechless when late night host Jimmy Kimmel asked whether West believes President Donald Trump cares about black people.
In a wide-ranging discussion centered around West’s admiration for Trump, Kimmel cited the Trump administration’s controversial practice of separating families at the border before referencing West’s infamous declaration about George Bush, made during a Hurricane Katrina telethon in 2005.
“You so famously and so powerfully said George Bush doesn’t care about black people, it makes me wonder what makes you think that Donald Trump does?” Kimmel asked. “Or any people at all.”
After West failed to respond for a few seconds, Kimmel cut to a commercial break.
— Consequence of Sound (@consequence) August 10, 2018
In April, West made tsunami-size waves in the cultural and political space by declaring his admiration for conservative figures like Candace Owens and Trump.
The result was a contentious media cycle fraught with the passionate reactions of left and right. For the most part, conservatives embraced West’s newly expressed worldview, claiming he’d accurately articulated societal pressures that force black Americans to adopt a particular, left-leaning political orientation, or else face social censure.
Many, including writer and cultural critic Ta-Nehisi Coates, saw West’s political shift as him turning his back on the black community.
“And so for Kanye West, I wonder what he might be, if he could find himself back into connection, back to that place where he sought not a disconnected freedom of ‘I,’ but a black freedom that called him back—back to the bone and drum, back to Chicago, back to Home,” Coates wrote in a May essay for The Atlantic.