Activist DeRay Mckesson Addresses Kanye's Slavery Comments: 'He's Clearly Not Done Any Research'

“There's nothing about this that makes sense."

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Across the internet, the topic du jour has been Kanye West’s viral comments about slavery shared during a his visit to the TMZ offices on Tuesday. “When you hear about slavery for 400 years. For 400 years?" Kanye told TMZ founder Harvey Levin and co-host Charles Latibeaudiere. "That sounds like a choice."

The statement, caught on camera, has already spurred dozens of think pieces and the viral hashtag #IfSlaveryWereAChoice. In the bleak aftermath of Kanye’s misguided remark about the darkest part of American history, TMZ called upon Black Lives Matter activist DeRay Mckesson to give his two cents.

“The only thing I can think of when he said that is that slavery was a choice of white people,” he told TMZ. “It was a choice for white people to not let people read, to put people in cages, to take their children from them, and to extend that for centuries. That was a choice.”

“When we think about the wealth gap, mass incarceration...these are deliberate choices of white people,” DeRay continued. “Oppressed people didn’t choose that. White people chose to do these things that led to these outcomes.”

He then shared some of his personal thoughts about Kanye’s other controversial statements from the past couple weeks. “There's nothing about this that makes sense,” DeRay said. “He's clearly not done any research. We wish he would stop talking in a way that was so uninformed.”

DeRay offered this advice to 'Ye: "Slow down. Find a place where you can learn, and read, and be in a place where your ideas are also challenged and you can push on other people's ideas, which I don't think for you, right now, is the public space. You need some time to reflect and learn more before you start making public statements."

Check out DeRay's full reaction in the video above.

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