Kanye’s father Ray West was once a member of the revolutionary Black Panther Party, and his son also has a rebellious streak – one which he's revealed several times in public. In 2005, during a live benefit for Hurricane Katrina (above), West delivered the memorable statement, 'George Bush doesn't care about black people.' More famous still is the moment (below) when he grabbed the mic from Taylor Swift at the 2009 MTV Video Music Awards to announce that Beyoncé should have won Best Female Video.
He can be far out, but West also preaches sense. He's been a supporter of gay rights, speaking out at gigs and in interviews against homophobia in hip hop. Most notable was an MTV interview where he said, in regards to using the word ‘gay’ disparagingly, ‘I wanna just come on TV and just tell my rappers, just tell my friends, “Yo, stop it, fam.”’