Kanye West defends supporting Donald Trump: 'I ain't never made a decision only based off my color'

Rapper Kanye West speaks during a meeting with U.S. President Donald Trump to discuss criminal justice reform at the White House in Washington, U.S., October 11, 2018. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque
Kanye West, pictured during his White House visit in October 2018, defended his support for President Trump. (Photo: REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque)

Kanye West’s latest Sunday Service performance took a political turn, with the rapper pausing to defend his support of President Trump to fans in Utah.

As the Deseret News reports, West emerged in Salt Lake City on Oct. 5 to host a Saturday edition of his popular church-inspired gatherins, which coincided with Mormon stronghold’s 189th Semiannual General Conference of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Though buzz over his forthcoming, oft-delayed new album, Jesus Is King, has reached a fever pitch, the 42-year-old star performed an older hit for the thousands of attendees present: “Jesus Walks.”

American rapper and producer Kanye West embraces real estate developer and US President Donald Trump in the White House's Oval Office, Washington DC, October 11, 2018. West wears a red baseball cap that reads 'Make America Great Again,' Trump's campaign slogan. (Photo by Ron Sachs/Consolidated News Pictures/Getty Images)
West, with Trump last October, hit out at critics who questioned his support as a black man. (Photo: Ron Sachs/Consolidated News Pictures/Getty Images)

West appeared to have things on his mind other than music, according to reports. At one point he warned fans about social media, telling them to “not read comments on the internet.”

“These people don’t know you like that,” he said. “Social media is designed to make you think slower. ... They want to slow you down and control you.”

He also turned to politics. It’s been just over one year since West made headlines by delivering an impassioned speech in support of Trump during the Sept. 29, 2018 Season 44 premiere of Saturday Night Live. Just two weeks later, on Oct. 11, he visited Trump at the White House, where he likened his red MAGA cap to a “Superman cape.” Both moments — along with his statements earlier that year calling slavery was a “choice” — resulted in a fair amount of ridicule and scorn from some fans.

West, however, remains defiant, according to footage from his Utah gig.

After hailing the Republican Party and Abraham Lincoln for freeing slaves, West fired back at critics who suggested pro-Trump views were at odds with his status as a black man.

“They try to tell me because of my color who I'm supposed to pick as the president,” he told the crowd. “‘You're black, so you can't like Trump.’ I ain't never made a decision only based off my color. That's a form of slavery, mental slavery.”

He also reportedly hit out at “mind controllers” in the media, then went on to speak out against the incarceration of African-Americans. He pushed for criminal justice reform, an issue wife Kim Kardashian is actively pursuing in collaboration with the Trump administration.

Though West has stayed relatively mum on politics this year, his comments about backing Trump as a black man echo his most recent tweet, dating all the way back to Jan. 1.

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