Newsbusters does some of the best work online in finding objectionable examples of media bias. This exchange from a radio interview Kanye West gave last week is an important discovery for those wanting to understand one of the most popular entertainers today:
KANYE WEST: We don’t got it like that. When I tell you only seven black billionaires, look at marginalization, and we feel like we happy because me and Rick Ross got it made, or I got a spread outside, a couple of us, or they put a black president.
Man, let me tell you something about George Bush and oil money and Obama and no money. People want to say Obama can’t make these moves or he’s not executing. That’s because he ain’t got those connections. Black people don’t have the same level of connections as Jewish people. Black people don’t have the same connection as oil people.
You know we don’t know nobody that got a nice house. You know we don’t know nobody with paper like that we can go to when we down. You know they can just put us back or put us in a corporation. You know we ain’t in situation. Can you guarantee that your daughter can get a job at this radio station? But if you own this radio station, you could guarantee that. That’s what I’m talking about.
Given that Newsbusters is such a great resource and there are some wonderful people working there, it breaks my heart when they fall prey to my primary grievance with movement conservatism today: an inability to recognize antisemitism, call it by name, and make fighting it a primary priority.
After highlighting this exchange, what is Newsbusters’ associate editor Noel Sheppard’s response? To rebut the charges about Obama’s money connections, point out that George W. Bush’ net worth is a third of West’s and crack a joke at the end.
Perhaps there is another, more important point to emphasize?
In the 1998 survey, blacks (34%) are nearly four times as likely as whites (9%) to fall into the most anti-Semitic category.
Among those blacks without any college education, 43% fall into the most anti-Semitic group. This number drops to 27% among African-Americans with some college experience, and stands at 18% among blacks with a four-year college degree.
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Kanye West’s statement is clear-cut antisemitism. West is saying in his own garbled, illiterate way that he believes–like Obama’s spiritual mentor Jeremiah Wright–a Jewish conspiracy runs the world and can be blamed any time a black person fails.
He is saying the same thing that Malcolm X preached then and that the Nation of Islam still teaches today. As the idol to millions told Playboy in May 1963:
MALCOLM X: Another thing to think of–in the 20th Century, the Christian Church has given us two heresies: fascism and communism. Where did fascism start? Where’s the second-largest Communist party outside of Russia? The answer to both is Italy. Where is the Vatican? But let’s not forget the Jew. Anybody that gives even a just criticism of the Jew is instantly labeled anti-Semite. The Jew cries louder than anybody else if anybody criticizes him. You can tell the truth about any minority in America, but make a true observation about the Jew, and if it doesn’t pat him on the back, then he uses his grip on the news media to label you anti-Semite. Let me say just a word about the Jew and the black man. The Jew is always anxious to advise the black man. But they never advise him how to solve his problem the way the Jews solved their problem. The Jew never went sitting-in and crawling-in and sliding-in and freedom-riding, like he teaches and helps Negroes to do. The Jews stood up, and stood together, and they used their ultimate power, the economic weapon. That’s exactly what the Honorable Elijah Muhammad is trying to teach black men to do. The Jews pooled their money and bought the hotels that barred them. They bought Atlantic City and Miami Beach and anything else they wanted. Who owns Hollywood? Who runs the garment industry, the largest industry in New York City? But the Jew that’s advising the Negro joins the NAACP, CORE, the Urban League, and others. With money donations, the Jew gains control, then he sends the black man doing all this wading-in, boring-in, even burying-in–everything but buying-in. Never shows him how to set up factories and hotels. Never advises him how to own what he wants. No, when there’s something worth owning, the Jew’s got it. Walk up and down in any Negro ghetto in America. Ninety percent of the worthwhile businesses you see are Jew-owned. Every night they take the money out. This helps the black man’s community stay a ghetto.
Just as Obama admitted in his memoir, West too wants to be like Malcolm, the martyr of 20th century black nationalism. Lyrics from his “Gorgeous” song:
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Is hip hop just a euphemism for a new religion?
The soul music for the slaves that the youth is missing
This is more than just my road to redemption
Malcolm West had the whole nation standing at attention
As long as I’m in Polo smiling, they think they got me
But they would try to crack me if they ever see a black me
I don’t mean to be too hard on Newsbusters. I just grow so tired of every single issue being framed in the Left vs Right, Democrats vs Republicans paradigms as though the baby boomers’ ideological contests were the only way to see the world. There are many anti-American value systems scattered across politics, culture, and religion beyond just “liberalism” or “leftism” that do not get the scrutiny they need. West’s surrogate religion is an antisemitic, conspiratorial black nationalism and we have a lot of work to do to fight against it. But until we have the courage to call it by name and reveal its KGB-sponsored origins, we’ll never start to make a dent in the large numbers held in its hateful grip in the ghetto.