Keep T.I. out of our schools
We aren't actually gonna let T.I. talk to people's kids, are we?
The other day, there was a story here (or was it at MTV News?) about how, since T.I. got off easy with his case a couple of weeks ago, requests have been pouring in for him to come speak to kids about the dangers of building a ridonkulous arsenal of deadly machine guns in your bedroom closet and what have you.
And I know that was one of the reasons why he managed to get away with only a year in jail or whatever, despite the fact that he already multiple felony convictions on his record. As part of his plea deal, he has to perform some ridonkulous amount of community service, and I guess him going and talking to these kids will count towards that.
I wonder if the government has any laws against using your court-ordered community service for self-promotional purposes. For all we know, the feds could basically be helping him promote his new album. He'll almost certainly benefit from the promotion generated from his community service tour, regardless of whether or not he embarks on it in a van with a big-ass mural of his next album cover airbrushed on the side of it, cholo-style.
But I digress.
Presumably, the judge saw the photos of T.I. and his umpteen funny-looking children (which one is his wife, again?) in their Easter Sunday best, and heard about the stirring speech he delivered to his church (I'm not sure if there's any audio or video of this - if there is, I could use a copy), and decided that, given his celebrity, T.I. could be much more of an asset to his community by enlightening today's youth as to the errors of his ways - rather than just rotting away in some jail cell for seven.
It must be nice to have that level of celebrity. I'm sure those of us who are black have a relative or two who wasn't nearly as fortunate in their sentencing.
However, I know there's been some rumblings, at least out here on the Internets, that this community service tour wasn't the only reason T.I. did as well in court as he did: People are wondering if T.I.'s lawyers are really that good, or if he got off easy the same way most jigs with a case get off easy, i.e. snitching.
Which is certainly understandable, since, according to the statistics (which I of course don't have handy), 9 times out of 10, when you hear about someone with multiple felony convictions getting off easy on some gun shit, especially in a backwards-ass state like Georgia, it's because they told on somebody. T.I. could very well be the 1 case out of 10, but who knows.
I would pose it as a question for my good friend TPAR, but I'm pretty sure I ran him off a long time ago. Good riddance!
I guess, for what it's worth, there wasn't any mention of T.I. telling on people in the stories on his plea deal here and at MTV News. All that was mentioned was the community service/promo tour. Only thing is, having been pre-med when I was in college, I'm not sure if your telling on people as part of your plea deal is included as part of the public record.
Either way, T.I. might seriously want to consider issuing some sort of statement, stating for the record that his plea deal didn't involve him listing the names of any people he knows who are involved in illegal activity. Otherwise... you know how it is. People might start to assume shit. Especially in hip-hop, where there's always some sort of controversy having to do with snitching.
I'm not saying T.I. told on anyone. I'm just saying.
But again, I digress. My issue is not so much why it is that T.I. is free to walk the streets - it's that he plans to use his court-ordered community service to give lectures to today's youth, what with their fragile, egg-shell minds. This strikes me as a bad idea for a few reasons.
First of all, the guy's a fucking idiot, and I'm not sure if I'd want someone that dumb talking to my kids. The shit might rub off on them.
I mean, look at the shit he got busted for in the first place. What kind of dumbass, let alone a dumbass with multiple felony convictions on his record, agrees over the phone - to some bodyguard he's only known for a brief period of time - to accept a cache of weapons in exchange for money, in a parking lot outside the motherfucking BET Awards? That just shows a lack of critical thinking.
I don't even like to talk about illegal downloading (which I don't do by the way) over the phone. But you guys know I'm soft like that. If I ever got sent to prison, my ass would be in the "Sean Levert room" in no time.
Also, and you guys know I hate to even delve into a man's personal business like that, but there's the fact that his girlfriend, the appropriately named Tiny, a) always looks high, b) got caught with drugs on her when T.I. got popped, at which point it was revealed she was with child, and c) has lost T.I.'s baby on more than one occasion. (Though obviously the guy has no shortage of offspring. No pun intended.)
Now, I don't mean to suggest that there's a connection between the one thing and the other. Because the truth of the matter is that I'm not a doctor; I just play one on TV. But someone seriously ought to look into that.
In the meantime, it seems absurd to me that anyone would think it's a good idea for this guy to be talking to people's kids. I realize he probably needs this tour to help throw off the scent of any other reasons why he might have gotten off easy, but certainly there's something else he could be doing.
I'd even go so far as to argue that today's youth would be better off reading my blog - which, oddly enough, according to many of my educator friends, is inaccessible in most schools. Hmm...
Maybe Alicia Keys was right.