Kanye West is running for president of the United States in 2020, ladies and gentlemen... or at least that's what he declared at the VMAs on Sunday night.
West made this announcement toward the end of a long, impassioned and largely incoherent speech that involved prolific use of the word "bro."
It's difficult to know how serious he is about this, particularly given that he admitted to getting completely stoned before the event.
If he does actually run in a few years, Kanye will go down in history as the first individual to announce a bid for the American presidency whilst high.
Unsurprisingly, the Internet exploded following Kanye's big news. While it was evident many viewed it as a big joke, others argued they'd much rather see him in the White House than the current Republican front-runner, Donald Trump.
Trump has shocked the world with his campaign's success thus far. At this point, it doesn't seem that farfetched Kanye West would run for president.
In spite of his discriminatory, misogynistic and completely irrational views, people are taking Trump seriously, so we might as well extend Mr. West the same courtesy.
Not to mention, if presidencies were determined solely by the Internet, Trump wouldn't stand a chance against Kanye, who has 14.2 million Twitter followers, compared to his 3.99 million.
Kanye's social media prowess was apparent immediately after his speech on Sunday:
I'll vote for Kanye West. If Donald Trump can be a viable presidential candidate why can't Kanye West?? — Charlamagne Tha God (@cthagod) August 31, 2015
Kanye West would still be a better president than Donald Trump. — God (@TheGoodGodAbove) August 31, 2015
Donald Trump has, finally, met his match. Kanye West says he's running for president. #VMAs2015 — Jose Antonio Vargas (@joseiswriting) August 31, 2015
Let's be real. If your ONLY TWO CHOICES were Trump or Kanye, who would you vote for? Retweet for Kanye. Favorite for Trump. — Shaun King (@ShaunKing) August 31, 2015
When one takes a moment to think about it, West and Trump actually have a lot in common: They're both theatrical, arrogant, narcissistic, controversial and unafraid to speak their minds. They both have millions of fans, but seem to be equally skilled at generating haters.
They also differ in a number of ways, particularly in terms of their political stances, which is perhaps why many would prefer to see West in the White House over Trump (if they were the only two choices).
When it comes down to it, it's hard not to agree, Kanye West would make a much better president than Trump. If forced to choose between the two, we'd vote for Yeezy over Trump any day of the week.
Kanye worked his way to the top, Trump has always been rich.
Trump has argued he's qualified for the White House due to his success in business, once telling Rolling Stone:
I'm running for office in a country that's essentially bankrupt, and it needs a successful businessman.
But he's conveniently left out the fact his companies have filed for bankruptcy four times in the past.
Moreover, while Trump would have you believe he became wealthy solely via his own hard work, he was actually born into affluence. His father, Fred C. Trump, was a successful real estate developer who, according to the Washington Post, was worth around $300 million when he died.
Kanye West did not have the same advantages whatsoever and built his wealth out of nothing.
Born in Atlanta and raised in Chicago by his mother, an English professor, Kanye dropped out of college to pursue his passions. Today, he's worth $130 million. Regardless of your personal opinions of the man, he's an entrepreneurial individual and his success is a testament to that fact.
West knows what it's like to overcome obstacles, Trump has always had a head start on others. Good leaders need to understand the nature of struggle, or they're not in a sound place to address the array of issues impacting the most vulnerable members of society.
Kanye cares about undocumented immigrants, Trump wants to deport them.
Trump wants to deport all 11.2 million undocumented immigrants, build a massive wall along the US-Mexico border and end birthright citizenship (which is guaranteed by the US Constitution). This plan is not only discriminatory, it's completely unfeasible and would cost an estimated $166 billion.
If Trump became president, he would do irrevocable damage to the economy if even one of these initiatives were executed.
Kanye West has decidedly different views on immigration. In 2010, he joined a group of musicians to boycott performing in Arizona after the state passed one of the harshest anti-immigrant laws in the country.
If West become president, one could assume he'd be an ally of undocumented immigrants, who play a vital role in the US economy.
Kanye defends the LGBT community, Trump opposes marriage equality.
While Donald Trump has made it clear he opposes same-sex marriage, Kanye West has helped revolutionize hip-hop's stance toward the LGBT community.
In 2005, West came forward and asked the hip-hop community to stop the use of anti-gay slurs in songs. He was a pioneer, taking a stand against homophobia in an industry frequently criticized for perpetuating it.
I think it's one of the strongest things that's happened in our... existence as human beings that are so controlled by perception. 'Cause you couldn't have been up against more. Your daughter is a supermodel, you're a celebrity... every type of thing, and it was still like, 'F*ck everybody, this is who I am.'
He'd obviously be a friend to the LGBT community as president, unlike Trump, who still refers to Caitlyn Jenner as "him" and "Bruce."
Kanye wants to end the War on Drugs, Trump opposes marijuana legalization.
As the Daily Beast highlights, Trump stated he believed all drugs should be legalized in 1990.
He's changed his tune since then, however, recently saying he opposes marijuana legalization.
As we've noted, Kanye has openly admitted to smoking weed and evidently believes it has benefits. At the VMAs, he expressed he smoked to "knock the edge off."
West has frequently called for an end to the War on Drugs and, as opposed to Trump, would likely take steps to legalize weed if he made it to the White House. In the process, he'd end decades of discriminatory policies, help the economy, reduce incarceration rates and deal a blow to Mexican drug cartels.
Kanye West might turn people off due to his flamboyant and dramatic tendencies, but at least he's not as callous and out of touch with reality as Donald Trump.
Indeed, Yeezus would make a much better president than Trump for a wide range of reasons. Who knows if he's really going to run in 2020, but we'd pay good money to see him debate Donald at any point in the near or distant future.
Citations: A secret to Donald Trumps success that you simply can't replicate (Washington Post), Donald Trump Lets His Hair Down (Rolling Stone), http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/economy/what-trump-didnt-say-about-his-four-big-business-bankruptcies/2015/08/07/bc054e64-3d12-11e5-9c2d-ed991d848c48_story.html (Washington Post), Performers to Stay Away From Arizona in Protest of Law (NYT), Kim Kardashian and Kanye West wedding anniversary Power couples relationship in numbers (IB Times), Kanye West (Bio), Hip hop goes for gay marriage (Salon), Star says rap is too homophobic (BBC), Donald Trump Doesn't Want You Fired For Being Gay But Dont Expect Him To Back Marriage Equality (Huffington Post), Donald Trump Legalize ALL Drugs (Daily Beast), Donald Trump on marijuana (CSPAN), Kanye West praises Caitlyn Jenner (Independent), Kanye for president (The Guardian), Trumps Immigration Tab 166 Billion (Politico), Donald Trump Talks Gay Marriage Cosby Caitlyn Jenner and More (Esquire), Want To Reduce Illegal Immigration End The Drug War (Huffington Post)