Kanye West shares poignant speech declaring February to be “Black Future Month”

“There’s no more Black History Month,” he asserted

Kanye West has made the argument that Black History Month – an annual commemoration of important people and events in the history of the African diaspora, celebrated every February in North America – is no longer relevant, instead declaring in a new video that February will henceforth be known as “Black Future Month”.

The video shows West – who is legally known as Ye – standing in the centre of a hooded group and delivering a powerful speech on his upbringing and struggles as a Black man in modern America.

“The system has been separating families in every way that they can, for years” he said, noting that he was separated from his mother (the first female head of the English department at Chicago State University) and his father (a Black Panther) at a young age, leading to a fractured relationship between West and the latter.

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He continued: “America is made to enslave us. What they ever gave us? We’d improve. We’d ensure. It’s documented, now cement it – Black future, it’s time to invent it. If Ye said it, you know that he meant it.

“There’s no more Black History Month. Every February, reminding us that we just barely can vote – you shouldn’t have to be a tech genius, a basketball god, a musical wizard, to be able to hold down your family. It’s been about four or five days since I’ve seen my kids, but we’re in America, ain’t we? That’s just how it is.”

Take a look at West’s full speech below:

The rapper went on to encourage his followers to be more embracing of their cultural roots, asserting that “it’s time for improvement” in the way Black Americans are perceived.

“We start by declaring Black Future Month,” he said. “We’re thinking about the future and not the past. This is a calling. This is more than balling. This is more than the dreams of a hardcourt and a Spalding. This is more than the dreams of the White House – this is our house.

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West then addressed the way that Black children are taught about history in schools, referencing an incident wherein his daughter said she “learned she was Black from Sierra Canyon’s perspective”. He continued: “You think [the school] is talking about Mansa Musa, or do you think it’s talking about Christopher Columbus?

“If we want to talk about Black history, who wrote that history for us? They beat down ideas that will keep you a slave, mentally. They target you – they put you in that box, to control your mind and to make you fearful. I just don’t have no fear left in me. All I got is love. I’ve been waiting for us to take the power in[to] own hands. I’ve been waiting for us to control our narrative.”

West said his current focus with the Black Future Month initiative is to “empower local leaders” and “unify” communities. He also brought up the way capitalism is rooted in white supremacy, saying: “Our money is being made and going back into a white system everywhere – our $44million is worth $1.8trillion.

“That means the Black dollar is neck and neck with the biggest company in the world – which is Apple – and [with] more focus, the Black dollar will be the biggest company in the world.”

Yesterday (February 7), West said he wanted Drake to narrate his upcoming Netflix documentary, Jeen-Yuhs. The three-part series will present an “intimate and revealing portrait of Kanye West’s experience, showcasing both his formative days trying to break through and his life today as a global brand and artist”.

His request comes after West’s plea to be given the “final edit and approval” of the documentary was rejected by its directors, Simmons and Ozah.

Also this week, West appeared in the video for Pusha T‘s new single ‘Diet Coke’, which he also had a hand in writing and producing.

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