There are reports that Kanye West is planning a trip to Australia with Bianca Censori – the Australian woman and Yeezy employee it’s rumoured he “married” in an unofficial ceremony earlier this month.
However, Dvir Abramovich, the chairman of Jewish-Australian community organisation the Anti-Defamation Commission, has called for West to be denied entry into the country due to his stream of antisemitic remarks throughout 2022.
According to a statement shared with NME today (January 23), Abramovich and the Anti-Defamation Commission – founded by Anti-Defamation League founder B’nai B’rith with the aim of combating antisemitism in Australia – are urging Australian Immigration Minister Andrew Giles to exercise his powers to refuse West’s entry into Australia.
Under section 501 of Australia’s Migration Act, an overseas traveler’s visa can be refused or cancelled because of what is known as the “character test”. Generally, visitors may be considered not to pass the character test if – among other possible criteria – your past and present conduct leads the Immigration Minister to consider you “not of good character”.
West’s antisemitic remarks last year, the Anti-Defamation Commission argue, would constitute a failure of the so-called character test. Specifically, they point to West tweeting in October that he would be “going death con 3 on Jewish people”. The tweet led to West’s Twitter account being temporarily suspended.
The organisation also references West’s October interview on Revolt TV’s Drink Champs, in which he made remarks about the “Jewish media”, claiming Jewish people had “owned the Black voice” and would “take us and milk us [until] we die”.
They also cited West’s interview on Alex Jones’ InfoWars last month, in which he praised Adolf Hitler, said “I am a Nazi”, and denied the Holocaust, falsely claiming that it was “factually incorrect” that six million Jewish people were killed during the Holocaust.
Following the interview, West posted an image on Twitter of a swastika inside a Star of David, with his Twitter account suspended immediately for violating Twitter’s rules against incitement of violence.
“Calling for violence and hate must have consequences, and Australia should not put out the welcome mat and provide a platform to a hatemonger who spews threats against the Jewish community and peddles conspiracy myths about Jewish power, greed and control,” Abramovich said.
“Kanye is a blatant, unvarnished antisemite, Nazi-lover and Hitler worshipper who openly admires an evil tyrant responsible for the extermination of six million Jews, including 1.5 million children,” he continued. “This kind of rhetoric is dangerous and has real-world consequences given the more than 30 million followers that this person has, and who may start believing that his demonisation of the Jewish community and that they must act.
“Allowing Kanye into Australia would also send the wrong signal about our nation and violate our core values of tolerance, diversity and respect. At a time of rising antisemitism in Australia and increasing vilification, his presence in the country, revolting anti-Jewish propaganda and incitement, and abhorrent rhetoric poses a significant risk to the Jewish community.”
West’s antisemitic remarks drew strong backlash last year, and led to professional consequences such as Adidas ending its long-running Yeezy partnership with the rapper, calling his actions “unacceptable, hateful and dangerous”. Balenciaga severed ties with West, his Yeezy products were removed from Gap stores they were previously stocked in, athletes Jaylen Brown and Aaron Donald left his Donda Sports agency, and his Donda Academy closed.
West’s peers also condemned him in the wake of his remarks. Longtime collaborator Pusha T called his comments “very disappointing”, with the likes of John Legend, ex-wife Kim Kardashian, Eric André, Howard Stern and Diddy among the high-profile figures who spoke out about West’s comments.