Kanye West Joins Protesters In Chicago
Kanye West joined protesters in his native Chicago on Thursday evening at a rally for George Floyd and the removal of Chicago Police from city schools.
While he tried to stay low-key at the event, West attracted a lot of attention – to the dismay of organizers.
Video by USA Today reporter Grace Hauck shows Taylore Norwood telling the crowd: “I’d like to reiterate that this is a youth-led rally. This is not a celebrity pop-up. You will not hijack this rally from the people who organized it.”
Taylore Norwood, 20, says that this Chicago march is a youth-led protest and that she doesn’t want a “celebrity” hijacking it. pic.twitter.com/uOTZapEc5x— Grace Hauck (@grace_hauck) June 5, 2020
Hauck tweeted that organizers told her West left the protest after less than 30 minutes.
In Chicago, systemic racism is blamed for intraracial violence that claims hundreds of lives every year. Since May 25 – the day Floyd took his final breath in Minneapolis – at least 24 black men and 5 black women have been killed in the city. (None of the deaths involved police officers.)
Earlier, a rep for West announced that the rapper was donating $2 million U.S. to black-focused charities and setting up a college tuition fund for Floyd’s 6-year-old daughter Gianna. Details on exactly where the cash is going were not immediately provided.
West will also reportedly provide aid to black-owned businesses in Chicago that have been impacted by the civil unrest of the past week.
During a Hurricane Katrina fundraising special 15 years ago, West famously ad-libbed: “George Bush doesn’t care about black people.” More recently, though, he has publicly supported the presidency of Donald Trump.
At one of his Sunday Service performances last October, West said: "They try to tell me because of my colour who I'm supposed to pick as the president. 'You're black, so you can't like Trump.’ I ain't never made a decision only based off my colour. That's a form of slavery, mental slavery."
This article has been updated since it was first published.
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