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Requests for T.I. to Speak Pour In

As a condition of his plea agreement with prosecutors on three federal weapons charges, T.I. will be required to complete a staggering 1500 hours of community service. In order to fulfill his part of the bargain, under which he will serve only one year in prison, the rapper has agreed to travel the country and speak with youth groups about the perils of gangs, guns and drugs. According to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, within 24 hours of the announcement of Tip’s plea, requests from various groups had already started to pour in. The Rev. Daniel L. Edwards III, president of Georgia’s Henry County chapter of the NAACP is one of many community leaders who says he will ask the rapper to come and speak with his young people. “We want to come up with a way to use his celebrity status and use him as a spokesman to reach the masses,” Edwards told the AJC. “They need to hear: Gangs are not cool, jails are not cool, guns and violence are not cool.” The Grand Hustle CEO is also required to promote respect for law enforcement under the terms of his plea. Court records show that actress Journee Smollett has asked T.I. to speak to kids as part of her “Catch Me Before I Fall” initiative,” and the rapper has also agreed to do public service announcements for the Boys and Girls Clubs of America’s “It’s Cool To Be Smart” program. “The idea really is he can get through to kids and fans like nobody else can,” said Steve Sadow, one of T.I.’s attorneys. “Why not take advantage of what may be a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity?”

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