Kanye West caused a move on Tuesday's "TMZ Live" – but perhaps a lesser-known show colleague, Van Lathan, released the microphone.
West, the rapper and the entertainer who drew new attention to himself during the past week with his controversial tweets – including his feelings at President Trump – surprised TMZ employees with a particular polarizing thought: that US slavery was a "choice" .
"When you hear about slavery for 400 years – for 400 years?" West said. "It sounds like a choice. Like you were there for 400 years and that's all? It's like we're mentally in prison."
"Do you feel like I'm free and feeling free?" West later asked TMZ employees.
That's when Van Lathan kicked back with an answer that meant what many confused and disappointed fans have thought of the days since the West returned to Twitter, where he has written an almost constant stream of abstract musings, many describing his support for Trump , as the rapper called his "brother".
"I actually do not think I think you're thinking of something," said Lathan. "1
Lathan continued: "But there's actually and real reality in reality behind everything you've just said. And while you're doing music and being an artist and living life as you've earned by being a genius, the rest of us must be in society deal with these threats to our lives. We must deal with the marginalization that has come from 400 slavery as you said, because our people were a choice.
"Frankly, I'm disappointed, I'm afraid and brother, I'm incredibly hurt by the fact that you've turned into something, for me, it's not real. "
Lathan was applauded on social media, which many attacked the West's comments.
" Kanye is a dangerous caricature of a "free-thinking" black person in America, " tweeted Symone D. Sanders, a CNN contributors who served as national spokesman for late Bernie Sanders presidential campaign. "Frankly, I'm upset and I'm over it. Even I can not believe I have to say this: Slavery was far from a choice. "
Feminist writer Roxane Gay tweeted ," I have no energy for nonsense but Kanye says Slavery where a choice repeats my previous statements about how dangerous his three-legged ramblings are. He is not a free thinker. He is a free moron who does not read. "
After his TMZ appearance, West traveled to Twitter to defend himself.
" Of course, I know that the slaves did not get shackled and put on a free-throw boat, "Han tweeted ." My point is that we have stayed in that position even though the numbers were on our side meaning we were mentally blinded. "
" They cut our tongues so we could not communicate to each other "he was added to . "I do not allow my tongue to be cut."
West had taken a cartoon look at TMZ headquarters after Tuesday's release of an almost two hour interview with The Breakfast Club's Charlamagne Tha God, conducted in West of California at the latest The West spoke to TMZ about some of the subjects that the interview focused on, including his opioid addiction, which began after the doctor prescribed him an analgesic after a liposuction surgery in 2016.
He was sick us for a week, he said in his interview with Charlamagne Tha God, which led to a "breakthrough" and his recovery.
West also confirmed his "love" for Trump to TMZ and said that the president is "one of Raphael's favorite people". His comments to Trump came after a series of similar tweets last week, during which West posted a picture of a red "Make America Great Again" hat signed by Trump.
"We are both dragon energy" West wrote on Wednesday. "He is my brother. I love everyone. I do not agree with anything that anyone does. That's what makes us individuals. And we are entitled to independent thought."
President's quote-tweeted West says the tweet was "very cool! "
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