Kanye West Deserves Your Vote
They say vote your conscience, I say vote your values
As if 2020 couldn't get any more bananas, Kanye West is running for President. And while the ship on his campaign may have already been run ashore before it even had the chance to cast its glorious sail, you should consider voting for Kanye.
Clickbait title aside, full disclosure, I enjoy Kanye. I have certainly not agreed with everything he has said or done in his life but I can appreciate the Yeezy seasons of redemption, along with the 'Ye seasons of cray. Far more than some of the other candidates that's for sure.
Further disclosure, I have worked in politics. Though not the Federal experience, I served three years in various capacities at the Hawai'i State Legislature.
Bright eyed and bushy tailed, I was stoked when I first started! I was working for a Democrat, the party in power in Hawai'i, and I thought, "Yes, finally gonna be a part of making a difference!"
Little did he know...
By the end of my tenure at 'The Ledge', my soul felt crushed. Despite being there to do the people's work, and the (super) majority of 'our leaders' were seemingly on the same team, there were dissidents plotting to overthrow leadership, hushed conversations on the railing between lobbyists fighting for the same appropriations, not to mention accusations of politicians hiding in the bathrooms to avoid hearing testimony. I even saw the majority leader cut a deal with the minority leader to retain power.
My favorite memory was being told that if I ever wanted to win an election, I either needed to move to a district where I looked like the people who lived there. Or get a Japanese girlfriend to walk the district with me because where I lived at the time, the population predominantly local Japanese.
Fun Fact: My paternal grandmother was Okinawan. As a mixed-race person with (as of this writing) 33 different ethnicities, of which half is non-white, I was not amused.
A microcosm of the macrocosm, the experience of working in politics was truly a fascinating chapter of my life. And the soul crushing experiences that came from realizing that if I wanted to effect change in a way that was authentic to me aside, I learned a great deal.
Which is why, Dear Reader, I write to you today to consider Mr. West, and his Birthday Party.
America, the experiment of democracy that has been playing for just a few hundred years, and which could still fail, is at a crossroads. Blame Trump, blame Obama, blame the Bush Dynasty, the Clinton conspiracies, (insert whoever you feel strongly is at fault for things being where they are here) 'Murica seems to be on the ropes or depending on who we ask, at the very least, 'Merica has lost a few rounds in the fight.
Our political system is a mess and Kanye West, who I'd argue has been pretty honest with us over the past few years about his mental health struggle and who also displayed a huge amount vulnerability in his South Carolina rally, is presenting the kind of honesty we need from politicians.
"But did you read the tweets."
Yes, I did.
And to what I have to follow-up, "Which tweets?" The beef with Wiz Khalifa that got out of control because of marijuana? The 'covfefe' surrounding that was quite intense at the time, which is no surprise when it comes to celebrities.
And are we surprised about what politicians say on Twitter of social media these days? We live in an era where someone like AOC, whose social media savvy helped to her to upset a long-sitting incumbent, the same as our sitting President, 45, tweets so much phrases like "I wish he'd stay off the Twitter" are both comical, because it's pretty funny to hear someone say that, and sad, because of all the vitriol he tweets and retweets
"But Kanye is crazy!"
To quote the legendary filmmaker Kurosawa Akira:
"In a mad world, only the mad are sane."
"But isn't Trump mad? Wouldn't this be the same thing?"
I don't think a West Presidency would be the same, but then again, since Trump took office, the Office of the President, will never be the same. We've come too far, revealed too much for things to go back to the way they were.
And in an ever changing world, should we really want more of the same? What did more of the same give us? It ripped open our collective wounds to reveal a psychologically, socially, and culturally divided collective.
And here's the thing about Trump, which is why you should vote, period. If Kanye gets people's asses to the polls to vote, if more people were to actually vote, then perhaps we wouldn't be in this predicament, so split at the seams that the choices we have, always end up being the lesser of two evils.
Look at the Democratic primaries. What started out as the most diverse field, was chopped down to just to two old white men.
And that, is why we're in a position where someone like Kanye feels compelled to run. Because here we are once again, where our choices from the big two parties are choosing from the lesser of two evils, ironically two old white men. Let his be the wake up call, when Kanye West, former Trump supporter, stands up and says, "Nah, I'm a better choice than both of these two. America deserves better."
America does deserve better.
The world deserves better.
Kanye isn't perfect.
But everyone out there bashing him and writing him off better pump the brakes because here's the reality:
In the red corner, the challenger, a career politician, who was in office long enough to be controversial in a variety of ways because of which decade/side of the issue he has supported, then walked back. And his opponent, reality TV contest host and charlatan businessman, who'd be better off owning an e-sports franchise called The Trolls but who happens to be President while America falls short in the battle against covid-19...
And that's not fake news, nor is it newsworthy. It's just our sad reality.
So whether you vote for Kanye or not, let's script a new reality, one that's a bit more honest, and truly, the real purpose of this writing is to make a case at very least, to cast a vote every day.
Vote to share aloha, to live love. Vote to say mahalo, to give thanks.
Because life is actually pretty valuable.
And chances are likely that the political realm may never change. We might still be left with the lesser of two evils but if we get out there and live according to values and not policies, perhaps we would do a far greater job of bridging the gap than our leaders ever could.