Kanye West’s Epic 12-Minute 2015 MTV VMAs Speech Includes A Presidential Run Announcement: Watch

Bianca Gracie | August 31, 2015 6:42 am
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Aside from Miley Cyrus‘ wild and crazy joyride that was her hosting gig for the 2015 MTV Video Music Awards, last night’s (August 30) ceremony did not have a lot of memorable moments. But leave it up to Kanye West to provide the right amount of excitement to shake up the evening!

When artists receive the Michael Jackson’s Video Vanguard Award, they usually give the audience a performance (see: Beyonce‘s medley at last year’s show). But oh no, not Yeezy! Instead of riling up the crowd with his stadium-ready tunes, the artist decided to give his version of a TED talk — which was slightly bizarre, intense, a little confusing and downright epic.

Prior to the 12-minute long speech, Taylor Swift — we all saw that coming, right? — presented Kanye with his award while also claiming 2004’s The College Dropout was the first album she and her brother purchased on iTunes. Then, after the cheers settled from the excited audience, the Swish artist began his speech.

Yeezy discussed many topics, from why he continues to fight for artistry, explaining the reason behind interrupting Taylor at the 2009 VMAs (Justin Timberlake had something to do with it) and calling out MTV on their ratings obsession. He even announced that he will be running for president in 2020, which is pretty awesome!

Watch the video in full, as well as the transcription and Timberlake’s Twitter reaction, below.

“First of all, thank you, Taylor, for being so gracious and giving me this award this evening.

And I often think back to the first day I met you also. You know I think about when I’m in the grocery store with my daughter and I have a really great conversation about fresh juice… and at the end they say, ’Oh, you’re not that bad after all!’ And like I think about it sometimes. … It crosses my mind a little bit like when I go to a baseball game and 60,000 people boo me. Crosses my mind a little bit.

And I think if I had to do it all over again what would I have done? Would I have worn a leather shirt? Would I have drank half a bottle of Hennessy and gave the rest of it to the audience? Ya’ll know ya’ll drank that bottle too! If I had a daughter at that time would I have went on stage and grabbed the mic from someone else’s? You know, this arena tomorrow it’s gonna be a completely different setup. Some concert, something like that. The stage will be gone. After that night, the stage was gone, but the effect that it had on people remained.

The … The problem was the contradiction. The contradiction is I do fight for artists, but in that fight I somehow was disrespectful to artists. I didn’t know how to say the right thing, the perfect thing. I just … I sat at the Grammys and saw Justin Timberlake and Cee-Lo lose. Gnarls Barkley and the FutureLoveSexyBack album … and Justin, I ain’t trying to put you on blast, but I saw that man in tears, bro. You know, and I was thinking, like, ’He deserved to win Album of the Year!’

And this small box that we are as the entertainers of the evening … How could you explain that? Sometimes I feel like all this s–t they run about beef and all that? Sometimes I feel like I died for the artist’s opinion. For artists to be able to have an opinion after they were successful. I’m not no politician, bro!

Look at that. You know how many times MTV ran that footage again? ’Cause it got them more ratings? You know how many times they announced Taylor was going to give me the award ’cause it got them more ratings? Listen to the kids, bro! I still don’t understand awards shows. I don’t understand how they get five people who worked their entire life … sold records, sold concert tickets to come stand on the carpet and for the first time in they life be judged on the chopping block and have the opportunity to be considered a loser! I don’t understand it, bruh!

I don’t understand when the biggest album, or the biggest video … I’ve been conflicted, bro. I just wanted people to like me more. ‘But f–k that, bro! 2015! I will die for the art! For what I believe in. And the art ain’t always gonna be polite! Ya’ll might be thinking right now, ’Did he smoke something before he came out here?’ The answer is yes, I rolled up a little something. I knocked the edge off!

I don’t know what’s gonna happen tonight, I don’t know what’s gonna happen tomorrow, bro. But all I can say to my artists, to my fellow artists: Just worry how you feel at the time, man. Just worry about how you feel and don’t NEVER … you know what I’m saying? I’m confident. I believe in myself. We the millennials, bro. This is a new mentality. We’re not gonna control our kids with brands. We not gonna teach low self-esteem and hate to our kids. We gonna teach our kids that they can be something. We gonna teach our kids that they can stand up for theyself! We gonna teach our kids to believe in themselves!

If my grandfather was here right now he would not let me back down! I don’t know I’m fittin’ to lose after this. It don’t matter though, cuz it ain’t about me. It’s about ideas, bro. New ideas. People with ideas. People who believe in truth. And yes, as you probably could have guessed by this moment, I have decided in 2020 to run for president.”

Kanye is so cute, y’all.

— Justin Timberlake (@jtimberlake) August 31, 2015

Jokes, you guys… Jokes. #chill

— Justin Timberlake (@jtimberlake) August 31, 2015

Btw… I JUST watched my man ‘Ye’s FULL speech… He always has a point. And I support it. #truth

— Justin Timberlake (@jtimberlake) August 31, 2015

[via Consequence Of Sound]

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