Jay-Z may be up for eight Grammy Awards — but the biggest winner of the telecast on Sunday night is likely to be President Donald Trump.
The high-profile rapper was recently asked by CNN’s Van Jones about the president’s alleged “s***hole” comments in regard to countries with little infrastructure and large portions of their populations interested in coming to America.
Those comments — which the president and others have denied — were leaked by Democrat Sen. Dick Durbin of Illinois after a private meeting at the White House (Durbin has a history of making questionable comments about Republicans).
Jay-Z’s comments this weekend about President Trump’s alleged words were as follows:
Yes, it’s disappointing and hurtful. It really is hurtful, more so. Everyone feels anger. After the anger, it’s really hurtful because he’s, like, looking down on a whole population of people.
You are so misinformed because these places have beautiful people and have beautiful everything. And it’s just, this is the leader of the free world speaking like this.
But on the other side, this has been going on. This is how people talk. This is how they talk behind closed doors. It was a moment when Donald Sterling [former owner of the Los Angeles Clippers, an NBA team] had been exposed as this racist on a private phone conversation that he was having, and they took his team from him. And it’s like, OK, that’s one way to do it. Another way would have been to [gather] his team and [say], ‘Let’s talk about it together,’ and let’s — maybe [impose] some penalties because once you do that, all of the other closet racists just run back in the hole. You haven’t fixed anything. What you’ve done is spray perfume on the trash can.
What you do when you do that is the bugs come and you spray something and you create a superbug, right, because you don’t take care of the problem. You don’t take the trash out. You keep spraying whatever over it to make it acceptable, you know. As those things grow, you create a superbug. And then now we have Donald Trump, the superbug. I’m being funny … But something happened to him [in his life], and he’s in pain and he’s expressing it in this sort of way.
Van Jones pressed Jay-Z after those statements. He asked him about the fact that black unemployment is at an historic low in this country under the new administration. Jay-Z, a multimillionaire, responded, “It’s not about money at the end of the day. Money is not — money doesn’t equate to happiness. It doesn’t. That’s missing the whole point. You treat people like human beings, then — that’s the main point.”
He continued, “You can’t treat someone like — it goes back to the whole thing, you going to treat me really bad and pay me well. It’s not going to lead to happiness. It’s going to lead to, again, the same thing.”
So not only is Jay-Z preaching to the world about politics; he even managed to wave off a booming economy and tried to preach to regular Americans about their finances. A lively economy may not change Jay-Z’s life that much, but plenty of Americans who have more money in their paychecks and in their 401(k) accounts might feel a little differently than the rapper does. And these recent benefits to everyday Americans, including bonuses given out by some 250 companies, are not “crumbs,” contrary to what House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said recently.
The president responded to Jay-Z’s comments by again pointing out that black unemployment is at an all-time low.
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Sunday night’s Grammy Awards are sure to get political — especially with Trump’s tweet directed at Jay-Z.
The president knows this. By putting out this tweet and directing it at the controversial rapper, he’s partly controlling the narrative for Sunday night.
There’s a good chance someone will mention the feud with Jay-Z, which only helps the president. It will draw attention to his tweet and the fact that black unemployment is at an all-time low.
People will try to diss President Trump for tweeting, but this is all part of what goes into the making of a “master persuader,” as “Dilbert” creator Scott Adams has explained time and time again.
In the argument between Trump and Jay-Z, Trump has the facts on his side. By gearing the narrative tonight toward his tweet, more people will see a fact that only makes him look good — except to liberal millionaires like Jay-Z, who have enough money to retire and never work again.
The president has been playing his Hollywood critics like a fiddle for a long while now. The only people who think preachy celebrities who insult Trump voters are doing any good are — you guessed it — other preachy celebrities who insult Trump voters. The president knows how to work the media. Tonight is likely only going to further prove that.
(photo credit, homepage images: Jay Z, CC BY-SA 3.0, by Mikael ‘Mika’ Väisänen / Donald Trump, CC BY-SA 2.0, by Michael Vadon ; photo credit, article images: Jay Z, CC BY 2.0, by Pieter-Jannick Dijkstra / Donald Trump, CC BY-SA 3.0, by Gage Skidmore)