While most of the press coverage of Kanye West’s first campaign event has focused on his condemnation of abortion and critique of Harriet Tubman (who West says “never actually freed the slaves” but “just had the slaves go work for other white people”)*, 2020’s newest presidential candidate also spoke about the Second Amendment in his stream-of-consciousness rally in South Carolina on Sunday evening.
West offered up some red meat for gun owners when he said “guns don’t kill people, people kill people,” and wondered what might happen if American gun owners were disarmed.
When asked about his stance on gun violence in the U.S., West described how he lives “on a 4,000-acre ranch [in Wyoming] and I can shoot AR-15s all day without going to jail.”
“Shooting guns are fun … The thing is if you guys put down all your weapons … When other countries come in and you have no weapons, what do you think is going to happen? You will be enslaved. Guns don’t kill people. People kill people.”
West and his wife Kim Kardashian West were eventually on the same page when it came to the birth of their first child, North, but the couple may not see eye to eye when it comes to the right to keep and bear arms. Kardashian West has been an outspoken supporter of more gun control laws, and in 2017 penned a letter in support of making it harder for Americans to exercise their right to keep and bear arms.
“I’ll be wearing orange to show my support for stricter gun control laws in the United States,” Kardashian West writes. “In almost 20 years, our country has made very little progress in enacting laws that would help protect innocent Americans from people who should not have access to firearms. Right now, there are more guns owned by civilians in this country than in any other country in the world.”
Interestingly enough, it looks like Kardashian West’s original letter has been removed from her website for some reason, though it’s not clear when it came down. Instead of getting to read all about how her armed guards support more gun control, it now reverts to a 404 error message.
Kardashian West’s stance has earned her praise from gun control activist Shannon Watts and Moms Demand Action in the past, but would appear to put her at odds with her husband’s position on the Second Amendment, given his apparent support for AR-15 ownership and opposition to gun bans. I’m sure the pair’s relationship is strong enough to survive a disagreement or two, and who knows, maybe Kardashian West’s position has shifted a bit since her open letter was published a few years ago.
Of course, even if she’s on board with his 2A talk, there may still be some trouble brewing on the home front.
A source tells ET that the Keeping Up With the Kardashians star is “upset” following some of the comments the rapper made during his presidential campaign rally in South Carolina over the weekend.
During the event, Kanye tearfully said that he and Kim discussed the possibility of her having an abortion while she was pregnant with their first child, daughter North. He also said shared his fear that Kim might divorce him following the emotional speech he gave on Sunday.
A source tells ET that “Kim, the family and Kanye’s friends are worried about him.”
Wyoming doesn’t have a red flag law, so at least Kanye doesn’t have to worry about the government coming for his guns without being accused of a crime. As for his mental state, I can only go off of what I’ve seen, but West doesn’t seem crazy or out-of-control to me, though some of his ideas were a bit unconventional, to say the least. When I watched his campaign event in Charleston, South Carolina, I saw someone who seemed less like a politician and more of an evangelist, frankly. I view West’s new crusade is more as a testament of his faith than an actual presidential campaign, but I suppose that might not make it any better for those who are worried about him.
*For what it’s worth, I don’t think West was criticizing Harriet Tubman specifically. If you listen to his comments, he went on to say that “The National Basketball Association is not owned by any blacks. Universal Music is not owned by any blacks.” I think his point was that even when slavery ended, black Americans did not find themselves on equal footing, either socially or economically, with white Americans.