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Kanye West Got Into a Near-Fatal Car Crash and Wants Elon Musk To Know About It

Kanye West is not the most loved celebrity right now - and even that's putting it lightly. His most recent statements aren't likely to win him new fans or, for that matter, make people take him seriously again.
Kanye West makes surprising claim about his 2002 car crash to Elon Musk 17 photos
Photo: X/Elon Musk & reddit (Composite)
Kanye West makes surprising claim about his 2002 car crash to Elon MuskKanye West makes surprising claim about his 2002 car crash to Elon MuskKanye West makes surprising claim about his 2002 car crash to Elon MuskKanye West makes surprising claim about his 2002 car crash to Elon MuskKanye West and his custom Ripsaw EV2 tankKanye West's custom Ripsaw EV2 tankThe Diesel Brothers' Ripsaw tankThe Diesel Brothers' Ripsaw tankThe Diesel Brothers' Ripsaw tankThe Diesel Brothers' Ripsaw tank, bought from Kanye WestKanye West and his custom Ripsaw EV2 tankKanye West still owns a Sherp ATV and he's driving it in the new McDonald's Super Bowl adKanye West still owns a Sherp ATV and he's driving it in the new McDonald's Super Bowl adKanye West still owns a Sherp ATV and he's driving it in the new McDonald's Super Bowl adKanye West still owns a Sherp ATV and he's driving it in the new McDonald's Super Bowl adKanye West still owns a Sherp ATV and he's driving it in the new McDonald's Super Bowl ad
In 2020, when Kanye West mounted a feeble and much-ridiculed Presidential campaign, he and Tesla CEO and current owner of X (former Twitter) Elon Musk were thick as thieves, as the saying goes. At that point, they had been running in the same circles for years, and Musk would occasionally speak about their relationship on social media, even endorsing him publicly as the future U.S. President.

For the past couple of years, though, Ye has been struggling with personal stuff, including a very public and bitter divorce and mental health issues. Whatever is happening behind closed doors has seeped into his public life in the most unexpected ways and climaxed with the anti-Semitic messages he posted to social media, which eventually put an end to his friendship with Elon Musk.

So far, Musk has banned Ye from X on two separate occasions, both times for hate and discriminatory talk. While the rapper's account has since been restored, he remains inactive here. But it sounds like he's looking to change that – or, at the very least, change the status of his relationship with Musk. As long as it happens on his (Ye's) terms, this time.

Kanye West makes surprising claim about his 2002 car crash to Elon Musk
Photo: Instagram/Ian Connor
Kanye reached out to Elon via messages, and he wants the world to know it, so he asked one of his collaborators to "get this out to the public." It's basically Kanye trying to twist Musk's arm into issuing some kind of statement because the message urges him to take sides in the custody battle with his ex-wife, Kim Kardashian.

Celebrity gossip aside, the rapper also tries to make two other arguments in his very specific way.

The first one would be that he is not bipolar, as he previously said, but has "signs of autism from my car accident." The second is that Musk should stop leeching on Ye's fame, which is hilarious given the kind of following Musk has.

"You can’t watch Kim keep my kids from me. And not say anything publicly and then call yourself my friend so I can bring my audience to your struggling platform," Ye writes.

Count on Kanye to deliver so many insults in so few words, masquerading as an olive branch meant to mend a broken friendship.

We're not doctors, so we'll refrain from commenting on his autism claims, except to note that he said once before he might be borderline autistic ("kinda like Rainman, but that’s my superpower," to paraphrase his exact words). We'll also note that the causes of autism are unknown but believed to be a combination of genetic and nongenetic environmental factors.

Kanye West and his custom Ripsaw EV2 tank
Photo: Tyler Mitchell for GQ
The 2002 car crash that could've killed Kanye but turned him into a superstar

While people on social media and elsewhere online are having a blast with Kanye's recent attempt to get Elon Musk's attention, the car accident he's referencing in those messages is nothing to laugh about. It was a near-fatal two-vehicle collision that could have ended his life, but that ironically turned him into the superstar he is today.

On October 23, 2002, Kanye West left a recording studio in Los Angeles after an extended session that wasn't without drama. At 3 a.m., he got into his rented Lexus and started for home, but he fell asleep at the wheel.

Accounts of the accident vary slightly here, with some claiming that another car cut him off, which forced him into oncoming traffic, slamming front-first into another car. Others say he swerved into the opposite lane when he fell asleep. Whatever happened exactly, the result was that Kanye slammed into another car, and both drivers were seriously injured.

Kanye West still owns a Sherp ATV and he's driving it in the new McDonald's Super Bowl ad
Photo: Instagram / Kanye West
The rapper broke his jaw in several places and was disfigured. He ended up spending weeks in the hospital, where he received reconstructive surgery on his face and jaw, which was wired shut for six weeks. Kanye recalled the experience on the track Through the Wire, which he recorded with his mouth wired shut and became a big hit right after release in 2003, turning him into the hottest rapper on the scene.

The injuries of the other driver were even worse. He broke both legs and had other fractures, but he was eventually able to make a full recovery. According to reports, the scene of the accident was so shocking that police refused to believe that Kanye had fallen asleep at the wheel, so they conducted four separate sobriety tests on him before they let the ambulance take him to the hospital.

The drama that Kanye West is trying to cause with Elon Musk aside, his 2002 car accident turned out to be a classic – and most inspiring – case of making lemonade out of what life throws at you.

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Editor's note: Photos in the gallery show some of Kanye West's former rides on his Wyoming ranch.

About the author: Elena Gorgan
Elena Gorgan profile photo

Elena has been writing for a living since 2006 and, as a journalist, she has put her double major in English and Spanish to good use. She covers automotive and mobility topics like cars and bicycles, and she always knows the shows worth watching on Netflix and friends.
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