Kanye West’s July 4th claim to run for president has caused an internet stir and left the punditocracy at odds, trying to determine the veracity and seriousness of the rapper’s intentions. Is Kanye West for real? Or is this merely a publicity stunt?… Or could it be, dare it to be said, a strategic move to split the vote?
Once buddies, united in the common goal “to make America great again,” Kanye West and Donald Trump are now purportedly adversaries in the race to the White House.
On America’s Independence day, the musician and entrepreneur dropped an ambiguous tweet that implied in no uncertain terms his intention to run in the 2020 US Elections.
“I am running for president of the United States“ said West in a bold tweet, which has received more than half a million retweets and comments and has been liked by 1.2 million people since July 4th, and that almost instantly received the backing of billionaire Elon Musk. The electric carmaker tweeted his response to West’s post immediately: “You have my full support!”
That this bombshell comes out of nowhere is an understatement. The understatement to end all understatements, leaving many scratching their heads. Why, only a few months ago, West was gushing over his chum, Trump, in an interview with GQ’s Will Wench. Even, implying his intention to vote for the “America first” president in November. “No, I’m definitely voting this time,” West said. “And we know who I’m voting on.”
The rapper – according to his own boasts over the years – never voted in his life. Voting for Trump therefore would have been a departure from practice. And yet: he’s taken it a step further now, putting himself in direct competition with the man he once fondly dubbed a father figure.
The timing of his announcement, more so than anything else – four months before the general election and, coincidentally, just in time for his album drop, no less – has prompted many to question his sincerity. Indeed, the experts don’t appear to be buying what he’s selling – at least, not yet.
It’s fair to say West’s supporters may well be chuffed about the idea of a West administration, but the wider public isn’t quite so. The opposite in fact as there’s a growing reductionist view, oscillating between suspicion and, in more extreme cases, outright derision. Then again, if the aim is publicity, then it’s a stroke of genius. After all, West is dominating the media narrative for nearly a fortnight. Success.
In an interview with Forbes reporter Randall Lane, who interviewed Kanye West right after the dramatic tweet that sent social media into a right tizzy, the mercurial California-based rapper made some rather outlandish and curious claims, not least in revealing the name of his party – the Birthday Party – and his idea to model his administration in the image of the fictional world depicted in the blockbuster movie, Black Panther.
So I spent four hours talking with @kanyewest yesterday, his first interview since his Fourth of July Tweet declaring he’s running for president in 2020. We covered a lot of ground….(1/x) https://t.co/ezzrl717lU
— Randall Lane (@RandallLane) July 8, 2020
West claimed that while “Trump is the closest president we’ve had in years to allowing God to still be part of the conversation,” his MAGA days were now over. That his support of Trump was all along merely an act of protest.
“One of the main reasons I wore the red hat as a protest to the segregation of votes in the Black community,” said West.
Although he then elaborated this reasoning further by suggesting that somehow interior design was at the root of the support as well, “other than the fact that I like Trump hotels and the saxophones in the lobby.”
Actress Debra Messing called West’s presidential bid a ploy to syphon votes away from Joe Biden, and consequently paving the way for a Trump victory. To this allegation of splitting the vote West said, “That is a form of racism and white supremacy and white control to say that all Black people need to be Democrat and to assume that me running is me splitting the vote.”
West went on to add that he felt threatened. “I was threatened as a celebrity into being in one party. I was threatened as a Black man into the Democratic party. And that’s what the Democrats are doing, emotionally, to my people. Threatening them to the point where this white man can tell a Black man if you don’t vote for me, you’re not Black.”
As filing deadlines in states such as Texas have already come and gone, and deadlines in key states such as Florida, New York, Illinois, Pennsylvania etc. are fast looming on the horizon (admittedly, West has less than 30 days to make his final decision, when the deadline for most states will have passed), the likelihood of West running for president looks slim. Nevertheless, he’s managed to seize a captive audience. To what end, only time will tell.
American Motorcycle Helmet Laws
In 2018, over 8 million on-road motorcycles were registered in the United States, nearly double the number registered in 2002. While motorcycles may have several advantages when compared to conventional automobiles, they have notable drawbacks as well. This includes an increased risk of a severe injury or fatality whenever an accident occurs. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NH nearly 5,000 motorcyclists died in fatal accidents in 2018. In addition to other safety measures, being aware of helmet laws across the United States may help prevent the likelihood of a fatal motorcycle accident.
Motorcycle Helmet Laws
According to the Governors Highway Safety Administration (GHSA), 47 states and the District of Columbia have some laws regarding the use of helmets while riding a motorcycle. Only 3 states, Illinois, Iowa, and New Hampshire, do not have laws requiring helmets while operating motorcycles.
bikes Many states that enact universal helmet laws require that motorcycle operators wear a helmet at all times while riding their vehicle. Some places that have universal helmet laws include California, New York, and the District of Columbia.
Alternatively, other states require helmet laws up until a specific age or requirement is met. An example of an age-restrictive law includes South Carolina, where helmets are required for riders under the age of 21. Other states, including Pennsylvania, Ohio, and Kentucky, have laws mandating a specific amount of experience in addition to age requirements before a motorcyclist may ride without a helmet.
The Benefits of Helmets While Riding
“Helmets could greatly reduce the severity of an injury or likelihood of a fatality occurring in the case of a motorcycle accident,” said Attorney Jim Hurley of Cooper Hurley Injury Lawyers. “In some cases, a helmet can be the difference between minor injuries and death.”
According to NHTSA data, individuals operating a motorcycle without a helmet are around 3 times more likely to sustain a traumatic brain injury (TBI) in the event of an accident when compared to those who drive with a helmet. Additionally, unhelmeted riders are nearly 40 percent more likely to die in a motorcycle accident.
Similarly, a study released by the National Trauma Data Bank found that wearing a motorcycle helmet reduces the severity of an injury, the likelihood of a fatality occurring, and could even decrease the amount of medical treatment required. Over the course of seven years, the National trauma Data Bank found that helmet use may have saved as much as $32.5 million total in intensive care unit costs, translating into nearly $1,800 per patient.
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