After news broke that Kanye West was hospitalised for a “psychiatric emergency” this week, the internet reacted with its usual vitriol.
Within moments, Twitter and Facebook users were mocking the rapper, who sparked concern for an onstage rant at the start of the week.
Jokes flew, memes were created, people laughed at his demise. In fact, an entire Reddit thread was created for people to share their Kanye jokes.
The same can be said about the reaction to his wife, Kim Kardashian, being held hostage in Paris. Rather than empathise with a mother of two who suffered an assault – the internet’s immediate reaction was to mock her, create memes, and move on to their next victim.
It seemed to take hours for anyone to put two and two together, that in fact despite Kanye's superstar status - his family have been through the mill in the last few months.
After his wife and the mother of his children was held hostage at gunpoint in a terrifying raid on her Paris apartment, he also had to deal with the ninth anniversary of his beloved mother’s death this November.
As if your family’s safety wasn’t a big enough concern to keep you awake at night, he also had to battle the demons created from the fact he paid for the surgery that wound up killing her.
In this age where we are actively trying to encourage people to speak out when they’re struggling with mental health issues – we can certainly do better than to react like this. It proves that, tragically, there's still a massive stigma around mental health and much more work to be done to eradicate it.
It's time to stop, think, engage brain, then address the keyboard.
Words by: Ellie Hooper
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