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Kanye vs. Kimmel: The epic battle

A few years ago, the popular animated TV show, South Park, ran an episode in which a group of kids came up with a hilariously simple and immature joke. Naturally, the whole world found it hilarious. The only person in the episode who doesn’t find the joke funny is rapper Kanye West, who actually became deeply offended by the seemingly harmless joke.

This episode was what immediately came to mind as I was scrolling through my Twitter feed last month and saw the real-life Kanye going on a caps-lock aided rant. The target of this rant? Talk show host Jimmy Kimmel. That night, Kimmel had run a sketch on his show spoofing an interview West gave with BBC’s Zane Lowe in which he discussed a variety of topics from his new rap album to fashion ideas (leather jogging pants , for example). Kimmel’s sketch replaced West and Lowe with children and used the words from the interview as a script.

Shortly after the sketch aired, West attacked Kimmel on Twitter, tweeting several angry messages which he has since deleted. Kimmel initially brushed them off, innocently tweeting that West seemed to be mad at him and insisting the feud was not a PR stunt. West’s angry rant spawned some hilarious hashtags (#NODISRESPECTTOBENAFFLECK being one of my favorites), and gave me some decent entertainment that night.

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Still, whether you love or hate Kanye West, he does have somewhat of a right to be upset. As he explained a few weeks later in an appearance on Kimmel’s show (one that got awkwardly and uncomfortably deep), the sketch appeared to him as an insult to his abilities as an African American artist. By simply replacing him with a child, without even altering the words of the interview, the sketch seems to portray West as nothing more than a child who is not to be taken seriously.

West continued on to say that he felt that many people view celebrities like “zoo animals” and freely take shots at them without fear of hurting them. Again, many people may view this whole situation as “Kanye being Kanye.” They have their point: the man has an ego and often crosses the line between confidence and arrogance. However, he is not the out of control egomaniac incapable of taking insults – as South Park portrayed him. The guy is a human being, and just as an ordinary guy won’t take all jokes the same way, neither will he.

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