The 40-year-old DJ had been due to sit down with the ‘Bound 2’ hitmaker for a TimesTalk earlier this month but the event was cancelled shortly after the 41-year-old rapper met with President Donald Trump and claimed he had been misdiagnosed with bipolar disorder and was just sleep deprived.
And Charlamagne admitted he felt any discussion with Kanye about the subject would have deflected attention from his desire to eraticate the stigma surrounding mental health issues, particularly in the black community.
He explained: “He said that he wasn’t on his meds. He’d gotten misdiagnosed. It wasn’t bipolar. It was sleep deprivation, so I was like, ‘I think he needs to figure that out.’
“For what I’m trying to do, which is elevate the conversation of mental health in the black community, and try to eradicate the stigma around mental health, I just didn’t think it would be a good conversation. I thought it would be a distraction.”
And Charlamagne claimed Kanye’s team were “relieved” when he told them he wanted to cancel the sell-out event.
Asked by ‘Late Show’ host Stephen Colbert how long he had waited after the ‘All Day’ rapper’s White House meeting to pull the plug, he said: “I took a day because I didn’t want it to be a knee jerk reaction. Sometimes we’ll see everybody with this backlash on social media and we get caught up in the hype and we’re not really thinking for ourselves.
“We’re thinking about based on how everybody’s reacting. So I waited a day and then I reached out to his team and I reached out to his people and they were all kind of relieved. They just felt like that was the best thing.”
Kanye – who has children North, five, Saint, two and nine-month-old Chicago with wife Kim Kardashian West – wasn’t upset when the talk was cancelled.
Charlamagne said: “It was all good. He took it well.”