The queen’s death is inspiring profound change in Kanye, for some reason

“Life is precious,” he said, as he scrubbed his IG for the umpteenth time.

NEW YORK, NEW YORK - MAY 22: Kanye West attends the Balenciaga Spring 2023 Fashion Show at the New Y...
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The globe was shaken Thursday with the news of Queen Elizabeth II’s passing. The complex and very private monarch’s seven-decade reign left a mark on the world, and millions are mourning her death. While some have tried to parse through her legacy in lengthy think pieces, and others have taken to Twitter to make memes and have discourse about her persona and the British monarchy’s role in colonization, celebrities like Elton John and Harry Styles have been making tributes. None of that is surprising, but what did seem a bit out of character was Kanye West being essentially born again through the news.

Ye, who has spent the better part of this year aiming at various targets in his music and social media, took to his Instagram to essentially start over. He scrubbed the account of all of his vitriolic posts, and put up one instead Friday morning that showed photos of the late Queen alongside a message of his own. “Life is precious,” he wrote. “Releasing all grudges today. Leaning into the light.”

The list of grudges from 2022 alone is a long one. Ye used song lyrics and social media to harass comedian Pete Davidson, who was dating his ex-wife Kim Kardashian earlier this year. He’s also cut ties with longtime collaborator Kid Cudi for having a friendship with Davidson, and lashed out at ex-mother-in-law Kris Jenner for disputes he’s had concerning his children with Kardashian. He’s also been embroiled in a public spat with adidas, claiming that the company has stolen his designs and hurt the value of his YEEZY brand. To release those grudges would hopefully welcome some peace in a year that has seen Ye on edge.

Not to be callous — it’s just such a Ye move. He famously became a born-again Christian, and while he stopped cursing in his music, that failed to inspire such a pious revelation as to release his many grudges. It didn’t stop him from portraying the death of his ex-wife’s new lover in a music video. It didn’t stop him from calling Trevor Noah a racial slur. It hasn’t curtailed any of his erratic behavior. And yet the queen of another country passing at 96 years old was what made Ye look inside and decide to do better. I don’t know if it says more about Ye or more about the power of the Queen. But we’ll see how long his grudge-less ‘gram lasts.