Kanye West made quite the splash yesterday during his explosive interview with TMZ Live, especially when he was confronted by newsroom staffer Van Lathan. The senior producer took offense when the rapper expressed his stance on slavery.
“When you hear about slavery for 400 years – for 400 years?! That sounds like a choice,” West said. “Like, you was there for 400 years and it’s all of y’all? You know like, it’s like we’re mentally in prison.”
West then addressed the newsroom staffers saying, “Do you feel like I’m thinking free and feeling free.” Lathan was the only person to respond to West, expressing his disappointment in the rapper’s controversial statement.
“While you are making music and being an artist and living the life that you’ve earned by being a genius, the rest of us in society have to deal with these threats to our lives,” Lathan told West. “We have to deal with the marginalization that has come from the 400 years of slavery that you said, for our people, was a choice.”
“Frankly, I’m disappointed, I’m appalled, and, brother, I am unbelievably hurt by the fact that you have morphed into something, to me, that’s not real,” Lathan finished.
The shocking confrontation immediately resonated with people on social media. The praise for Lathan was immediate and strong, even from celebrities.