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Kanye West says he’s taking a break from politics—and Twitter says it’s too late

TMZ/YouTube

Is the ‘old Kanye’ back?

In a stark departure from recent events that include donning a “Make America Great Again” cap and meeting with the presidentKanye West on Tuesday tweeted that he’s taking a break from politics.

The rapper, who’s lately going by Ye, announced that he’ll be focusing on his creative work instead.

“My eyes are now wide open and now realize I’ve been used to spread messages I don’t believe in,” he wrote. “I am distancing myself from politics and completely focusing on being creative !!!”

It could be the sign of a sharp turn, given Ye’s controversial dive into politics in recent months. Ever since he returned to Twitter in April, he’s been a fountain of thought, spewing takes that have resonated with the far-right and won the approval of President Donald Trump.

Earlier this month, West met with Trump in the Oval Office, where the rapper dubbed his “Make America Great Again” cap “a Superman cape.” Just this week, Candace Owens said West contributed designs for her “Blexit” campaign to urge Black voters to part with the Democratic Party (though West denied this in another Tuesday tweet).

Before that, Ye’s proclamations about the 13th Amendment and support for the president incited strings of condemnation from left-leaning fans and fellow celebrities.

West has also been forthcoming about his struggles with mental illness, but many have admonished him for using that as an excuse to spread harmful political messages. So after his tweet Tuesday saying he’s switching gears to focus on “being creative,” many on Twitter had this response: It’s too late.

People also speculated that West could finally be feeling the heat—or a lack thereof—in his earnings. His summer album Ye enjoyed the No. 1 spot on the Billboard 200 before a sales plummet in its second week.

https://twitter.com/ireallyamit/status/1057400822013747200

Many have guessed his foray into politics was all a ruse to hype his sales in the first place.

And though there was chatter that West’s politics were making his Yeezy sneakers easier to come by, as Vox reported, this had more to do with Adidas’ marketing strategy on the most recent release.

Regardless of the impact on his own image (or bank account), West is inextricable from his wife Kim Kardashian and her family of influencers. As many riffed on Twitter, it’s easy to imagine Kris Jenner’s concerns about branding had something to do with this.

No matter what it was inspired by, and despite the lack of specificity in what “messages” he no longer believes, some are hopeful that Ye’s tweet signifies a genuine change of heart. They’re waiting for a return to the “old Kanye,” the pre-MAGA Kanye, the music-only Kanye.

Others? Not so much.

Kris Seavers

Kris Seavers

Kris Seavers is the Evening Editor for the Daily Dot, where she covers breaking news, politics, and LGBTQ issues. Her work has appeared in Central Texas publications, including Austin Monthly and San Antonio Magazine, and on NPR.