Sources close to Kanye West claim that the rapper-turned-designer is perplexed by the negative feedback his most recent collection garnered, indicating that the response is not the result of a deliberate publicity ploy meant to incite controversy.
West wore a t-shirt with the Pope’s face on the front and the words “White Lives Matter” on the reverse on Monday as his YZY Season Nine collection made its unexpected Paris Fashion Week premiere. He invited the contentious conservative YouTuber Candace Owens, who was also sporting the same shirt, as a guest, and models also wore it while the presentation was in progress.
Jaden Smith, a front-row visitor, departed the performance as soon as he noticed the strange decorations, and West received harsh criticism from celebrities, journalists, and activists.
However, insiders who have interacted with West since the performance in France tell us that he is frustrated that he was unable to successfully convey his message.
Insider: “He believes it’s a PC issue. He wants to give the ‘other side’ [of the American racial conflict] a voice.” They continued, “He doesn’t know why others aren’t recognising that.”
The term “White Lives Matter” was created as a retort to the Black Lives Matter movement, and the Anti-Defamation League has labelled it “hate speech and linked [it] to white nationalists.” West has been candid about his battles with bipolar disorder, and in a meandering address he gave before the event, he even made mention of a hospitalisation.