Kanye West ‘Apologizes’ to George W. Bush

Tuesday at The School of the Art Institute of Chicago, while receiving an honorary doctorate, Kanye West gave a seemingly incoherent speech and referenced his post-Hurricane Katrina 2005 comments about then-President George W. Bush when during a telethon on live TV, standing next to a stunned Mike Myers, West said  “President Bush doesn’t care about black people.”

West said, “I’m sorry, that was just my opinion. I’m a pop artist, so my medium is public opinion and the world is my canvas. I’m sorry is something you can use a lot. It gives you the opportunity to give your opinion, apologize for it and give your opinion again. People say you should not be sorry for your opinion.”

He continued, “George Bush has some very cool self portraits. I didn’t know he was an artist.”

After applause and laughter died down, he said, “I felt my nerves a bit and I don’t feel that feeling a lot. The nerves of humility and modesty when being honored. A  humanization, a reality of being recognized. And all I thought as I sit here kinda shaking a bit is I need to get rid of that feeling. I need to not be nervous.”

He concluded, “This honor is going to make your lives easier. Two reasons you don’t have to defend me as much and I’m going to make all of our lives easier. And it’s these Floyd Mayweather belts that are needed to prove what I’ve been saying my entire life. Whether it’s the cosign of Paul McCartney grabbing me and saying, ‘it’s OK he doesn’t like white people,’ or the New York Times cover, or the Time most influential cover— and now a doctorate at the Art Institute of Chicago. When I was giving a lecture at Oxford I brought up this school. When I went on that mission to create in other spaces, apparel,  film, performance—it would have been easier if I had a degree at the Art Institute of Chicago. Thank you.”

Follow Pam Key on Twitter @pamkeyNEN