Average Joes should not compare themselves to celebrities under any circumstances. It's a recipe for depression. There's no word on whether 'Pac was 24 sitting on 25 mill, but his accomplishments were priceless by the time he passed away on September 13, 1996.

Author Kiese Laymon compares 'Pac's 25-year-old accomplishments to those of President Barack Obama, Bill Clinton and Mitt Romney, in a post commemorating the fallen rap icon on Esquire.com's Culture Blog. See an excerpt below.

The Republican and Democratic national conventions culminated this year without one mention of these American citizens, their lives or the responsibility the nation has to them. Not only would they not talk to them; they refused to even talk about them. While many of us were beaming with joy at Michelle, Bill, and Barack's speeches, a part of me wondered what those political stars, on the left and the right, were doing at 25 years old.

Bill Clinton was milling around the halls of Yale Law School hitting on a 24-year-old law student named Hillary Rodham. Barack Obama was trying his hand at community organizing in Chicago. Michelle Robinson, prior to becoming Michelle Obama, had just finished her first year as an associate at Sidley & Austin, a corporate law firm in Chicago. Mitt Romney was finishing up his senior year as an English major at BYU.


By the time he was 25, Tupac Amaru Shakur had recorded six albums and starred in five movies. He'd had five bullets enter his body and had gone to prison for eleven months. He travelled around the world, influencing the life and art of millions of people and talking about organizing a national movement against poverty and police brutality. He had shot two white off-duty cops in Atlanta who were harassing a black man, and beat the case. By the time he was 25, Tupac Shakur fought to stay alive for six days in a Las Vegas hospital after three new bullets entered his body. And less than three months after his 25th birthday, Tupac Shakur was dead.

Click here to read Kiese Laymon's blog in its entirety. —Carl Chery (@cchery)

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