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  • The theologian and scholar told Salon that Donald Trump is

    The theologian and scholar told Salon that Donald Trump is "childish, with no aspiration of being childlike.” | Photo: AFP

Published 23 May 2016

“It’s going to be jazz-like,” Cornel West of the U.S. elections in an interview with Salon.

Famed critic and activist Cornel West said that Bernie Sanders supporters, faced with the probable decision between a “milquetoast neoliberal” and a “childish” Frankenstein in the U.S. general election, must be sincere like jazz musicians.

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“I think people ought to be free to think for themselves. It’s part of being jazz-like,” he said in an interview Monday with Salon.

West, a professor and theologian, has endorsed Sanders, who in turn selected him on Monday to help write the Democratic platform at the party’s national convention in July.

Sanders’ other picks include Congressman Keith Ellison, Native American activist Deborah Parker and environmentalist Bill McKibben.

If Sanders' campaign should end without him receving the Democratic nomination, West said activists should be “letting people know why it is that we have such limited options in terms of the ballot box and what forms of activism can we engage in to be thermostats and shape the climate of opinion, rather than just be thermometers and register and reflect that climate of opinion."

WATCH: The Empire Files: Black Radical Tradition with Cornel West, Mumia Abu-Jamal

The jazz reference came after a “Cornel West Concerto” by the jazz composer and activist Arturo O’Farrill, who sat in on the interview.

Keeping Bernie Honest: Support for Sanders Has to Be Critical

West did not say how he would want Bernie supporters to vote should he lose, but he said that they should be honest with themselves and back his candidacy as long as possible.

“Brother Bernie,” as West calls him, is motivating supporters to “go down fighting until the last moment” because they are “tied to a cause, not just a candidate.”
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