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courtesy of Instagram/@kanyewestt_official

Kanye West says people with mental health problems are ‘written off’

The rapper compared their treatment to homophobia in earlier hip hop

Kanye West has been feuding with Drake on Twitter over the last couple of days, also hitting Travis Scott and Pusha T in the crossfire as he criticised Drake’s supposed sneaky disses when he was featured on their tracks. But what’s new? Well, among the tweets, Kanye also had some things to say about mental health.

For a while now, Kanye has been open about his struggles with mental health and it was no different yesterday, when he tweeted: “No one would ever choose to end up in a mental hospital and diagnosed with a mental disorder but god chose me to publicly go through this journey and it is beautiful.”

Kanye explains that his own mental health allows him to “experience first hand how people who have mental health issues get written off by society. Don’t listen to him cause he’s crazy. He’s washed cause he’s crazy etc…”

Kanye is also positive about the future for people with mental health issues. “I don’t blame people for not knowing how to handle this,” he writes. “We as a society will learn together… We’re all growing together.” He likens the “writing off” of such people to “hip hop homophobia” and also says: “It’s like when you see a tv show from the 60s and it’s super racist and sexist.”

Kanye’s comments about not dismissing people with mental health issues are, broadly, valid, but using phrases like “beautiful” – while well-intentioned –  is wildly irresponsible for someone with his platform. Mental illness, for many people affected by it, is frequently not beautiful, and has an impact on people’s lives in very difficult ways. Likewise, some of Kanye’s other opinions on mental health have been extremely reckless – his claim that he cannot be creative while taking medication is a dangerous thing to say, given that medication can be literally life-saving for many people.

Towards the end of his missive, Kanye was also keen to express his love for Travis and Drake, despite his earlier ill-feeling: “Drake and Trav both love Ye more than anyone and I love those guys back. We love everyone.”