John Legend and Kanye West have had a long friendship, and the pals made news earlier this year when they got into a debate on Twitter over the rapper’s pro-Trump views.
Now, the “All of Me” singer, 39, is speaking out in a new interview with WSJ. Magazine for its annual INNOVATORS issue about his relationship with West, 41, and why it was important for him to respond publicly on social media.
“A lot of people have tried to armchair-diagnose him, but I leave it to him and his doctor to discuss what’s going on in his brain,” Legend says in the interview about West, who previously revealed he was diagnosed with bipolar disorder.
“Clearly I disagreed with some of the things he was saying, and I was worried that his saying it might empower some of the wrong forces, might be really demoralizing for people who looked up to him and thought of him as a leader.”
Acknowledging that his friend may be drawn to President Donald Trump‘s “personality” and “marketing panache” and his “don’t-give-a-f—ness,” Legend, who was named entertainment innovator of the year, explained that he didn’t want fans to blindly follow West’s views.
“My point to him was that when you wear that hat, when you appear to be endorsing him, you’re endorsing his policies as well, all of his rhetoric and not just the parts you like,” said Legend. “I think we had to talk about it, because we didn’t want people to be deceived into following his line of thought without considering the full ramifications.”