We at war
We at war with terrorism, racism
But most of all we at war with ourselves

from Kanye West – Jesus Walks Lyrics on Rap Genius

Meaning

In the intro to the song, we hear a drill sergeant spouting orders to his troops and the troops' response, as well as the drum cadence which provides the foundation for the song

All are indicative of the “war” which Kanye declares us all to be a part of

People are constantly at war with their environment and others, but Kanye believes the root of all conflict lies internally.

Kanye’s reference to terrorism also points out that he is rapping in the midst of the George W. Bush presidency. Bush’s time in office was characterized not only by the international War on Terror but also by conservatism, a political philosophy that has rarely favored African-Americans or recognized the disadvantages that many still face

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