Here's his speech
from Friday night at Left Forum. It was awesome.
This is as close as you'll get to hearing (the best bits of) Christ's message in the 21st century. My parents are both left-leaning Christians and I actually sent them this speech because it demonstrates all the common ground between them and me and my atheist politically-radical friends. Christ was a radical; so be we.
(Btw, Christ's Bits -- Probably would not see.)
Anyway, if nothing else, the guy can deliver a powerful secular sermon. There is a role--a need--for that in our world and in America (all you past and present Obama partisans knowwum-sayin? Hey!). The guy has performative, sermonic power. I felt rejuvenated, buoyed, inspired watching and listening to this. I feel no shame--zero--about that.
There's much to be critiqued in his writing, certainly. I just read a great passing critique of West's writing on "the role of art" in Curtis White's fucking wicked and funny little book The Middle Mind
, just yesterday.