Footage from Kanye West‘s emotional “Today Show” appearance has leaked online and shows the program’s host, Matt Lauer, forcefully trying to make the rapper watch a clip of George W. Bush.
In the clip, West expresses his frustrations and explains his motivation for doing a one-on-one televised interview was not for glamour or glitz.
“I didn’t need you guys to show me the tape and prompt my emotions to what I’m going to say,” said West referring to Bush describing the rapper’s racist remarks about him during the 2005 Hurricane Katrina disaster. “Pre-looking at his face, I came up here because I wanted to say something to him right after the fact. I don’t really have to do the TV stuff. This is reality, this is the real thing going on. I don’t need all the jazz…I’m here to man up to different mistakes that I made and speak to the moment when I pegged George Bush as a racist…I came here to say I’ve made mistakes and grown as a person and that it’s not as easy as boxing someone into a villain role or into a race role. I did not have the information, enough information in that situation to call him a racist. That might’ve been the emotion that I felt.” (Rap-Up)
Writing on Twitter, West publicly vented his frustrations toward Lauer yesterday.
“I went up there to express how I was empathetic to Bush because I labeled him a racist and years later I got labeled as a racist…. While I was trying to give the interview they started playing the “MTV” under me with audio!!!!!!! I don’t mess with Matt Lauer or the Today Show … and that’s a very nice way for me to put it! HE TRIED TO FORCE MY ANSWERS. IT WAS VERY BRUTAL AND I CAME THERE WITH ONLY POSITIVE INTENT. I feel very alone very used very tortured very forced very misunderstood very hollow very very misused. I don’t trust anyone but myself! Everyone has an agenda. I don’t do press anymore. I can’t be everything to everybody anymore. I can’t be everybody’s hero and villain savior and sinner Christian and anti Christ!”
Kanye West has since cancelled his performance on the show.
West broke the news on his protest via a series of Tweets.
“I’m not performing on the Today Show for obvious reasons. I’m so happy the world got to see just a small piece of “the set up”
“I blatantly said I’m not performing on a tweet and to everyone around me and the next day they still announced a performance.”
“Do you guys see what I’m saying now… this is just a small slice of the day to day bullsh*t that goes on that helps to precipitate…”
“… the idea that I such an a**hole…. cause when I don’t perform oh noooow I’m the one that’s crazy or a jerk!”
“If I hadn’t tweeted about how they set me up at the show they would have never played the extra footage that displayed how disrespectful…” (Kanye West Twitter)
See the video footage below