Over the past few weeks, Kanye West has found himself involved in a seemingly endless number of confrontations with the paparazzi. It's not worth going in-depth on each incident, but July 12 was undoubtedly the pinnacle—after a TMZ cameraman badgered the rapper with an inane line of questioning, he went on a rant that could've made for a pretty kickass freestyle. "Don't talk ... don't talk to me ... I don't wan't to hear paparazzi talk to me or anybody I know ... and tell everybody never talk to anyone that anyone knows ... don't talk to themselves .. DON'T TALK EVER AGAIN." And that was that.
Kanye was serious about his new "Don't Talk" policy. While we don't know whether that first camera guy kept his word to not talk to friends or family after leaving LAX, we do know that a different camera guy pestered Kanye on Friday—and Yeezus went swinging.
TMZ claims to not employ the now-injured paparazzo in question, but, naturally, they were on the scene:
Kanye told the man not to ask him questions, but he kept going -- and Kanye attacked, attempting to wrestle the camera from the guy's hands, and the man fell down. Kanye then immediately jumped into a waiting car and took off. Paramedics and police rushed to the scene.
The extent of the photog's injuries are unclear.
It's okay to look at this two ways. The case can be made that Kanye brought this treatment on himself by seeking fame and celebrity, and by shacking up with the definition of fame and celebrity and its shallow downsides, Kim Kardashian. The artist is paid, in a way, to expect this kind of abuse from strangers. You should know what the public spotlight entails, and, unlike a naive child star, a non-famous West was around the scene long enough to know his career would never to be just about the music.
And yet.... Just look at that shitbag camerman up there—the histrionics, the egging-on, and later, the undoubtedly played-up injuries that seem much worse than the relatively minor fight would indicate. These stalkers are some of the most morally bankrupt and deplorable people in the entertainment industry. Who really wants to be on their side?
I don't know. Part of me thinks it should be okay to treat professional nuisances like camera-baring tourists on a savannah. No one ever blames the rhino when an idiot flashes a bulb in his face.
Maybe Joe Mande is right.
Attacking paparazzi should be legal— Joe Mande (@JoeMande) July 19, 2013