A day after his arrest and release without charges following an alleged altercation with a photographer in Newcastle, England, Kanye West went on the offense in his blog on Saturday. Before explaining the events that led to his arrest, West's all-caps post goes after the paparazzi and declares that there ought to be a law preventing photographers from selling pictures of him without permission.
"I put my hand up to the camera in self-defense!" West said of what happened outside the Tup Tup Club. "Here's what happened. ... When I left the club, I was encountered by a thirsty paparazzi as usual. He felt he had more rights to my space than me, so I put my hand up to prevent him from taking my image. I didn't assault him but merely putting my hand up to cover his lens. My security yelled, 'Get the camera off him.' I guess in all the commotion the camera scraped his nose."
West said that three hours later, police came to his hotel and arrested him because of the photographer's complaint.
"The cops were very cordial but told me they had to arrest me because a complaint was filed," West went on. "They spoke about how this was obviously a publicity stunt by the photographer but they still had to go through the motions. ... Even though I wasn't charged, the damage was done. Sure enough, the next morning, plastered across every media outlet, 'Kanye Gets Arrested.' It didn't matter that I wasn't charged or the fact that I hadn't assaulted anyone. All that mattered was that I was arrested.
"Sidebar, they quoted me as saying, 'Get the camera off him!' like I was talking in third person," the Chicago music maven added. "He tried to make me sound like a crazy person, and people believed him. What merit does this guy have, that he can say something about me and people take it as law? The fact that he could get me arrested off a mere complaint but I can't ask him to stop taking pictures of me is very lopsided."
The Louis Vuitton Don, whose scuffle with a photographer and videographer in Los Angeles in September also resulted in his arrest, complained that he has no legal means to protect himself from the paparazzi.
"Let us not forget the paps killed Princess Diana," he vented. "When will there be a law passed that simply enforces that someone has to ask to take a photograph of you? That would seem like common courtesy. Right now the paps are above the law and the people they shoot are below it. ... The exploitation of my image is the problem. It produces a 'by any means necessary' behavior that cause the paps to drive recklessly on freeways, jump over fences and invade privacy all in an effort to get that 'money shot.'
"You shouldn't be able to sell a picture of me without my permission," he continued, adding that photographers would still be allowed to take pictures in certain public places and red-carpet events. "The personal problem I have with the paps is when they try to catch you being a regular person. I am not a celebrity. I'm a normal person that's just famous. I refuse to sneak in and out of back doors and kitchens of hotels, etc. I am protecting my personal space since there are no laws to protect that for me."