DOWNTOWN — The School of the Art Institute of Chicago has rescinded an honorary doctorate degree it awarded to Kanye West in 2015.
A petition calling for the school to rescind the award collected more than 4,000 signatures. It was created just about a week ago.
“The School of the Art Institute of Chicago condemns and repudiates Kanye West’s (now know as Ye) anti-Black, antisemitic, racist, and dangerous statements, particularly those directed at Black and Jewish communities,” spokesperson Bree Witt said in a statement.
“Ye’s actions do not align with SAIC’s mission and values, and we’ve rescinded his honorary degree.”
West has not been in contact with the university since the degree has been rescinded, Witt said.
West has come under extreme scrutiny after making numerous antisemitic comments on social media and in public. He recently praised Hitler on Infowars, a far-right talk show.
“I like Hitler,” West said on the show. “I love Jewish people, but I also love Nazis.”
In October, West posted a text message between himself and Sean “Diddy” Combs in which he claimed Combs was “controlled by Jewish people.” He wrote on Twitter that he would soon go “death con 3 on JEWISH PEOPLE,” according to The Associated Press. Twitter and Instagram locked him out of the accounts.
Multiple brands, including Adidas and Balenciaga, have cut ties with the rapper as he’s made antisemitic and other bigoted remarks.
In Fulton Market, West’s image was removed from a 14-foot mural created by artist Jason Peterson. The mural, on West Lake Street near North Sangamon Street, showed a black and white image of West over words painted in white and black and white stripes.
Peterson posted to his Instagram story in October, showing a photo of the mural with West completely blacked out with a caption saying, “We need better role models.”
West was born in Georgia but spent much of his youth in Chicago, where he honed his musical abilities.