GoldLink's Comments on Kanye Are as Spot-On as They Aren’t

Brilliance in one avenue does not absolve a person across the board.
Author:
Publish date:
GoldLink Comments on Kanye West

For better or worse, everyone’s talking about Kanye West, but very few outlets are steering the conversation in an appropriate manner. 

DMV artist GoldLink’s latest Instagram story encapsulates the tireless balancing act fans, writers, and fellow artists are going through to both defend and vilify their idol. But as we all know, with too many spinning plates, there’s bound to be a crash.

GoldLink’s comments on the conversations surrounding Kanye are as spot-on as they aren’t. He rightfully cites Kanye as a musical visionary, an artist who so thoughtfully and meticulously propelled hip-hop forward and spawned a grip of beloved subgenres that thrive to this day. In one post, he claims to not be calling Kanye a “genius,” but also celebrates and validates his “vision.” Within that praise, however, lies a two-pronged problem.

First, no one knows the true nature of the behavior they are defending. Outside of celebrating Kanye’s talent as an artist, GoldLink’s defense of Kanye The Free Thinker lacks ground. GoldLink admits that people are calling Kanye “crazy,” and perhaps that’s dangerously conflating people who are citing his actions as a mental health crisis. Others are calling this a morally bankrupt marketing scheme. Another group attests Kanye has always been like this. The list goes on, of course, but the existence of this list makes defending Kanye nearly impossible.

Even in the case of Kanye’s tweets being his genuine foray into the world of policy and motivational speaking, his undeniable contributions to hip-hop do not suddenly absolve him of mistakes past and presently unfolding. If anything, GoldLink’s citing Kanye’s influence speaks to the immense platform Ye has to stand on and preach from. No one should police his speech, but as a culture, we do have the right to express reservations and want for Ye to be conscious of his influence before firing off his next Tweet.

GoldLink concludes by insinuating that Kanye sees something that the average person cannot. While that may be true, and has been evidenced in the music, no one presently knows what Kanye sees—perhaps not even Kanye. That harrowing realization should deter us from turning his tweets into a media circus.

Where does this leave us, then? Simply put, we must retool. 

Too few sources are discussing Kanye West in the proper way because they do not know what they are discussing. Instead of being reactionary, this is a good time for the culture to consider its options. If this is trolling, marketing, or a mental health concern, the question becomes, “How can we cover this responsibly?” 

One of the answers is by avoiding GoldLink's approach of using legacy to presuppose the present. No one is immune from being taken to task, not even the man in the pink Polo.

Related

Kanye West and Kid Cudi Are “Reborn” & So Am I

Kanye West and Kid Cudi Are “Reborn” & So Am I

The true value of a song like “Reborn” lies in the fact that it is an easily-accessible alternative to important conversations.

Kanye West album predictions, 2019

3 Predictions for Kanye's Next Album—2 of Them Are Not Great

What does Kanye West have up his musical sleeve? We have some ideas.

DJBooth_logo2x

GoldLink & the New Myth of the Organic Artist

GoldLink, Raury, Post Malone, are a new crop of artists really blowing up off the first song they ever posted?

GoldLink's new album is coming 2019.

GoldLink Confirms New Album Coming 2019

GoldLink confirmed his much-anticipated new album is coming in 2019 at Soulection Experience Los Angeles.

Kanye West, a decade defined in five songs

5 Songs Defined Kanye West’s Decade

“Kanye has always been an avatar for duality. But, over the past decade, this has become his defining trait.”

Kanye West, Gunna, Lil Peep, 2019

Kanye West, Gunna, Lil Peep & More: Hip-Hop Headlines

All the latest hip-hop news in one place.