Are we able to really separate the talent from the person? Idolatry is a sin, yet some of us are guilty of committing this sin daily. We hold celebrities accountable for so many things its unfathomable. It’s hard to forget that they’re human sometimes. That’s just the culture we’re in though because we’ve become so enamored with each their daily lives. That we don’t take time to appreciate our own.
Or is it we take joy of out of that fact their life sucks more than ours and makes us more appreciative? Now, that last statement was a head-scratcher. It was supposed to be. Celebrities can’t do things that you and I take for granted like going to Walmart at midnight unkempt. To us, that might not seem like a big deal, but Steve Harvey has even said that one thing he misses doing is “people watching”. So, it’s imperative to remember that we remember they have feelings too.
That’s why it’s so hard to watch Kanye West’s demise even if it’s his own undoing. West erratic behavior has been on full display since that public outburst at the MTV VMA’s. Ever since that his behavior has gotten worse but it’s been excused because of his talent. Then West said something that was unforgivable, “Slavery was a choice”. For Black people, this was the biggest slap in the face. Since we’ve been his biggest cheerleaders despite all his shortcomings and it felt like he spit in our faces. Comedian DL Hughley perfectly articulated our frustrations with Ye in his Netflix special “Contrarian”.
Which brings me to my next question can we separate the talent from the artist? Or do we cancel that person? Honestly, speaking this cancel culture isn’t clear and it’s very fickle. The people who need to be canceled aren’t being canceled.
There are plenty of artists who messed royally and we’ve forgiven them. Think of Alicia Keys, Robert Downey Jr, Angelina Jolie, Kim Kardashian. These people that I’ve mentioned have done things that have deemed non-model citizens. Yet, they’ve still managed to do some good in this world. That’s why you shouldn’t put your mouth on people when they were down and out people helped them out. The individuals I mentioned above were able to repair their reputation.
West has created music that has transcended a generation. My mother will listen to his music with me which speaks volumes. Most parents detest their children’s music, my church has some stuffy members. Shockingly, I was able to coerce them into listening to his gospel album despite their feelings about him as a person. One thing is for certain with West, he sucks at articulating his thoughts. It’s always a scavenger hunt to figure out what he really means, most people have lost all patience with him. Which makes me as ask again, are we able to separate the talent from the person?