Kanye West blasted after saying slavery was "a choice"

Kanye West visited the TMZ newsroom for an interview during which he professed his love for President Donald Trump and ended with a staff member sternly reprimanding him after comments suggesting slavery was "a choice."

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"I just love Trump. That's my boy," he said in response to a question from TMZ chief Harvey Levin about his penchant for wearing a "Make America Great Hat."

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He discussed various topics including his "free thought" stance in a sort of stream-of-consciousness style before things went off the rails.

"When you hear about slavery for 400 years. For 400 years? That sounds like a choice," he said, provoking looks of stunned silence, then this impassioned rebuke from TMZ's Van Lathan:

"I don't think you're thinking anything. I think what you're doing is the absence of thought. Kanye, you're entitled to your opinion, you're entitled to believe whatever you want. But there is fact and real-world, real-life consequence behind everything that you just said.

"While you are making music and being an artist and living the life that you've earned by being a genius, the rest of us in society have to deal with these threats to our lives. We have to deal with the marginalization that has come from the 400 years of slavery that you said, for our people, was a choice.

"Frankly, I'm disappointed, I'm appalled, and brother I am unbelievably hurt by the fact that you have morphed into something that for me, is not real."

See the exchange here.

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About the Author

Jennifer Brett
Jennifer Brett
Jennifer Brett is a multiplatform journalist and digital coach. She writes The Buzz blog for accessAtlanta.com.