'Coachella… should be ashamed of themselves': Petition to remove Kanye West from festival gathers 30,000 signatures

The Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival is set to return to the Southern California desert for two consecutive April weekends after a two-year COVID hiatus, but some fans would prefer it if Kanye West — who has played Coachella five times, and in 2011 became the first rapper to close the festival — not close out this year’s edition. In light of the artist currently known as Ye’s erratic and problematic behavior, more than 30,000 people have signed a petition on Change.org urging Coachella organizers to pull West from the 2022 festival’s Sunday headlining slot.

“We have watched Kanye harass, manipulate, and hurt Kim [Kardashian], Pete [Davidson], and others for over a year now. No one seems to want to stand up to him, and the ones that do, he puts under fire as well,” reads the statement on the petition. “Most recently, he has been threatening actual bodily harm on others. This is ridiculous that he is allowed to freely do this. Coachella (along with other brand names that are still working with him) should be ashamed of themselves and should not be giving him any more of a platform. Please sign & share!”

The grass-roots petition, which was launched on March 17 by a user with the alias Kim Pete, follows the release of West’s animated “Eazy” music video, which shockingly depicts West kidnapping, decapitating, and burying Saturday Night Live star Pete Davidson (who is currently dating West’s estranged wife, Kim Kardashian). Kardashian, who was granted single status by a judge on March 2, has been the target of West’s increasingly stalker-like behavior and online bullying in recent weeks, with West repeatedly taking to Instagram either to accuse Kardashian of being an unfit mother to their four children or to make grand “romantic” gestures in the hopes of reconciling. (For instance, on Valentine’s Day, he posted a photo of a truckload of roses he had sent to her home.) Kardashian issued a statement in February blasting West for his “hurtful” “constant attacks,” saying they are “causing further pain” to their family.

West has also used social media to viciously attack Davidson, referring to the comedian by the unflattering nickname “Skete” and even posting an ugly, untrue rumor that Davidson spurred Mac Miller — who, like Davidson, once dated pop star Ariana Grande — to suicide. Davidson eventually confronted West, writing in a leaked text exchange: “I’ve decided I’m not gonna let you treat us like this anymore and I’m done being quiet.”

West was recently suspended from Instagram for 24 hours after he responded to Trevor Noah’s Daily Show monologue about West’s “terrifying” treatment of Kardashian. West targeted the TV host with racial slur in a since-deleted Instagram post; a spokesperson for Meta, Instagram’s parent company, stated that West had violated Meta’s policies regarding hate speech, harassment, and bullying. Since then, West’s planned performance at the 2022 Grammy Awards ceremony, which will be hosted be Noah on April 3, has been canceled due to his “concerning online behavior.”

However, according to CNN, Noah, a longtime vocal fan of West’s music, had nothing to do with the Recording Academy’s decision. Noah has in fact defended the controversial rapper, whose Donda is nominated for Album of the Year along with four other Grammys. Noah commented on West’s original inflammatory Instagram post with “it breaks my heart to see you like this” and stressed that West’s music had been an “indelible” part of his life; on Sunday, as the news broke of West being pulled from the Grammys’ telecast, Noah tweeted, “I said counsel Kanye not cancel Kanye.”

Still, it seems that many concerned citizens adding their signatures to Kim Pete’s Change.org petition are fully on board with the idea of West’s cancelation. In the “Reasons for signing” section on the petition’s landing page, one person wrote, “The amount of abuse/veiled threats etc. should not be celebrated/tolerated.” Another argued, “Kanye is a narcissistic egotistical bully who thinks his money and celebrity give him a free pass to abuse, threaten, shame and defame others. Why he has been allowed to get away with this appalling behavior for so long is a joke.” And another wrote, “Trevor Noah said it best: ‘The most powerful, richest woman in America can't even get this man to stop harassing her.’ That says a lot about the amount of celebrity he has and how it leads to zero accountability.”

As of now, the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival will take place in Indio, Calif., from April 15-17 and April 22-24, with Harry Styles headlining both Fridays, Billie Eilish headlining Saturdays, and Kanye West still playing Sundays. Both Eilish and West performed at the most recent Coachella festival, in 2019. West previously threatened to withdraw from this year’s Coachella, after he perceived remarks that Eilish made about crowd safety during one of her own concerts, while helping a fan in distress, to be insults aimed at his friend Travis Scott.

Scott was originally set to play Coachella 2022, but was dropped from the bill following the crowd-surge tragedy at his own Astroworld festival last November, which killed 10 concertgoers and injured hundreds more. (A Change.org petition calling for Scott’s removal from the Coachella gathered more than 70,000 signatures.) Through social media, West issued an ultimatum demanding that Eilish “apologize [to Scott] before I perform,” but Eilish merely commented, “Literally never said a thing about Travis,” and their feud quickly died down.

Representatives for Goldenvoice/AEG, the promoter for Coachella, did not respond to Yahoo Entertainment’s request for comment regarding Kim Pete’s petition or the possibility of West’s removal from the Coachella 2022 lineup.

Read more from Yahoo Entertainment:

  • Festival expert reflects on Astroworld tragedy and 'sacred duty' to protect young concertgoers: 'You can’t lose people’s kids at your shows.'

  • Billie Eilish responds to Kanye West's demand she apologize to Travis Scott

  • Kanye West cries, testifies, rocks Easter-egg hair at historic Coachella Sunday Service

  • 'Billiechella': Eilish stuns with career-making Coachella 2019 set

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