Update: The text of this post has been revised to reflect that Ariana Grande has since deleted all of the quoted tweets.
Kanye West called out Ariana Grande via Twitter after the singer promoted her “Imagine” video by joking about his online meltdown over his Drake feud. The producer was apparently upset, feeling that the “Thank U, Next” singer had interjected to make fun of his mental illness (which he previously claimed not to have).
“All of this foolishness weighed on my mental health,” he wrote. “So @ArianaGrande you know I got love for you but until you’re ready to really make sure everyone’s ok don’t use me or this moment to promote a song.” The tweet he referred to had come from Ariana on Thursday night at the height of his latest Twitter rant about his and Drake’s ongoing disagreement.
In that tweet, Ariana joked, “Guys, i know there are grown men arguing online rn but miley and i dropping our beautiful, new songs tonight so if y’all could please jus behave for just like a few hours so the girls can shine that’d be so sick thank u.” And while it was clear exactly which “grown men” her tweet referenced at the time, she was quick to reply to Kanye’s call out with one of her own.
“With all due respect, i don’t need to use anyone to promote anything,” she shot back. However, despite the first, defensive half of her response, she was also apologetic. “I was making a comment ab what men were doing at the time vs. women. it was a joke which i understand now was probably insensitive. i apologize if i was in any way triggering and hope u feel well today.”
Later, she addressed the controversy with a few final thoughts: The first, echoing her past opinions about the internet and the second, a directive to fans and observers regarding their behavior. “Anyway i hate the internet so much. sending love. but like bye,” the first message read, before signing off, “Last thing. stop weaponizing mental health. everyone.” All of her tweets addressing the situation have since been deleted.
For what it’s worth, both sides made valid points. No one’s mental health should be bullied, but nor should it be used as a crutch to excuse negative behavior. While Ariana’s joke was probably out of line, nearly everything Kanye West has done for months has been out of line and actively harmful to literally millions of people being affected by his buddy Trump’s policies, or to the thousands of women who are survivors or victims of domestic violence he effectively tried to silence by usingXXXTentacion to boost his streams. Hiding behind a bipolar diagnosis — especially, when he barely acknowledges he has it and actively avoids treatment — isn’t something he should be allowed to do.