In his latest bizarre move, Kanye West and his father, Ray West, celebrated the end of his struggle with prostate cancer by eating bugs.
West is the son of Ray West, a photo journalist who worked at the Atlanta Journal Constitution in the 1960s and 1970s. Ray divorced Kanye’s mother, Donda West, back in 1980. Donda and Kanye moved to Chicago afterwards, and Ray stayed in Atlanta.
Ray’s ex-wife, Cheryl Carmichael, revealed a few months ago, “He’s getting treatment and from what I understand the treatments are working.”
She also revealed that West’s diagnosis had had a profound impact on Kanye, saying, “Sometimes you need other events to trigger bigger events. It could have triggered something bigger in Kanye because he is super close to his dad after his mom’s death.”
The father and son celebrated the end of his battle with cancer by eating critters, which the rapper shared on his Instagram on Tuesday along with the caption, “No more fear.”
Kanye has rarely talked about his dad before, but has mentioned that his dad inspires his creativity and artistic talent. He told BBC:
“My father was a Black Panther, my father was a photo journalist. We had a dark room in our house. Seven years ago, he lived in a homeless shelter, not because he was homeless, because he wanted to help the ex-drug addicts, he wanted to get that close. He started a foundation called Good Water and moved to the Dominican Republic, to help with the prostitution, to help with the extortion. He stays in the DR right now.”
Kanye has referenced his dad in several songs before. In the song Champion, Kanye references the struggles he faced in his relationship with his dad, saying:
“I don’t know I just want it better for my kids / And I ain’t saying we was from the projects / But every time I wanna layaway or deposit / My dad’d say “when you see clothes, close your eyelids” / We was sort of like Will Smith and his son / In the movie — I ain’t talking ’bout the rich ones / Cause every summer / He’ll get some brand new harebrained scheme to get rich from / And I don’t know what he did for dough / But he’ll send me back to school with a new wardrobe.”
He also talked about him in a later song called Father Stretch My Hands. In that, he sang:
“Sorry that I ain’t call you back / The same problems my father had / All his time / All he had / All he had’n what what he dreamed / All his cash / Market crashed / Hurt him bad / People get divorced for that / Drop some stacks, Pops is good / Momma pass in Hollywood.” In a since-deleted tweet, Kanye said about the song, “I cried writing this. I love my dad.”
Ray has in the past also attempted to dissuade Kanye from his support of Donald Trump. Kanye told The New York Times:
“He expressed that he felt that some of the policies were hurtful. And that I’m a person that does not intend to hurt people, never hurts people with intention. I expressed the example that I have a cousin that’s locked up for doing something bad, and I still love him, so I don’t base my love for a person on if they doing something good or bad.”
Ray West has largely chosen to stay out of the limelight with regards to Kanye’s career.