On Sunday, July 19th, Kanye West held his first campaign rally for his 2020 presidential bid. The rally saw the 43-year-old rapper make a number of bizarre, outlandish claims. Including a criticism of slave liberator Harriet Tubman.
Tubman, a political activist and abolitionist, escaped from slavery in the mid-1800s. After finding freedom, she made 13 missions to rescue approximately 70 enslaved people along the “Underground Railroad”. During the rally, West, claimed that Tubman “never actually freed the slaves, she just had them work for other white people.”
In an interview with TMZ on Tuesday, Harriet Tubman’s great-great-great-niece Tina Wyatt rebutted Kanye West’s remarks about Tubman.
“If it hadn’t been for people like her, he would still be on that plantation,” she shared. “He would not be able to be out there saying the things he says and he wouldn’t have the money he has because they would have it all.”
Wyatt shared with TMZ that she believes that Kanye’s criticism of her great-great-great-aunt, proves “he doesn’t even understand who she was.”
“I don’t even understand what he meant when he said that ‘she did what she did so they could go work for white people,’ ” Wyatt continued. “I don’t understand what that meant.”
Wyatt urged West to use his platform to “uplift.”
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“I don’t know if he’s doing it or not, I don’t know where he’s putting his money,” Wyatt shared. “Put your money into something that will uplift other people,” she said. “Him … running to be president is not one of them.”
Reports have alluded to the likeliness that Kanye West — who was diagnosed with bipolar disorder in 2016 — is in the midst of a manic episode.
The music mogul was hospitalised back in 2016, and his been open about his mental health journey since.
During an appearance on David Letterman’s Netflix show, My Next Guest Needs No Introduction, Kanye shared, “What I want to say about the bipolar thing is because it has the word ‘bi’ in it, it has the idea of, like, split personality. Well, that works for me because I’m a Gemini, but when you ramp up, it expresses your personality more.”
“You can become almost more adolescent in your expression or border into places,” Kanye continued. “This is my specific experience that I’ve had over the past two years, because I’ve only been diagnosed for two years now.”