Kanye West has responded to the concert flap already being dubbed "Wheelchair-Gate" – attempting to explain the incident his wife, Kim Kardashian, deemed "clouded by lies."
The rapper, 37, made headlines over the weekend for calling out a fan in a wheelchair – and another with a prosthetic leg – who were unable to stand as he requested at his show in Sydney on Friday.
In a five-minute speech the rapper delivered onstage at a concert in Brisbane, Australia, Monday night, West addressed the incident and invoked everyone from Ben Affleck to Whoopi Goldberg while offering his point of view.
"So, people on the Today show, I'm not sure I keep up with the news, but if Michael Strahan is still at the Today show – no, Good Morning America, Matt Lauer, the girls on The View – Whoopi Goldberg, Robin Roberts, if y'all run this, take a step back and look at this: I'm a married Christian man with a family," he said, per The Daily Beast.
"At my concerts, I make sure everybody has as good a time as possible. So all this demonizing me, it aint' goin' to work after a while. Pick a new target," he declared.
West stopped Friday's concert after he noticed the two people not standing, despite his order, but backed off after members of his team verified they were physically unable to stand. A source close to the rapper later said he had "no malicious intent to offend."
On stage Monday, West did not repeat that sentiment – instead defending himself as an artist and family man.
"If you take someone that can go from being a rock star across the globe and everything and make the decision to pick one woman and raise a family ... there's enough things workin' against you," he said. "I'm not going to make one of them Ben Affleck statements and s---."
"This is real expression. This is real artistry," he also says. "You know, an artist's career doesn't happen in one cycle of news – an artist's career happens in a lifetime. And if you're a true artist, you're willing to die for what you believe in."
Kardashian also defended her husbandon Instagram Monday in the wake of the controversy.
"Its frustrating that something so awesome could be clouded by lies," she wrote in part. "Kanye never asked anyone in a wheel chair to stand up & the audience videos show that. He asked for everyone to stand up & dance UNLESS they were in a wheel chair."
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