On NBC, Kanye West Said...WHAT? "George Bush Doesn't Care About Black People"

September 2nd, 2005 8:52 PM

Jaws dropped across America in the middle of NBC's Concert for Hurricane Relief, hosted by Matt Lauer. In between musical numbers, stars would report on the damage and call for help. Comedian Michael Myers made a serious pitch. Then rapper Kanye West started rambling, clearly improvising, saying that black families are called looters, while white families are described as just looking for food. That must have put the NBC folks on the button, but West shortly after blurted out: "George Bush doesn't care about black people."

A clearly uncomfortable Mike Myers bit his lip, and the director quickly switched the camera to black actor Chris Tucker, who looked surprised to be thrown on camera. Minutes later, Lauer tried to glide past the outrage by saying the criticism on the broadcast is "a part of the American way of life." Yeah, the insane part.  UPDATE: AP has a story up. MSNBC has a video clip. Hmm. Do you think Time regrets its cover from last week saying West was "Hip-Hop's Class Act" and the "smartest man in pop music"?