|TI Docu-Series Good or Bad for Hip Hop Youth|
|Written by Westside ID4599|
|Monday, 12 January 2009 02:10|
Tuesday, February 10th at 9:00PM (ET/PT) s new docu-series "T.I.'s Road To Redemption: 45 Days To Go" will premier on MTV. This docu-series will reflect on hip hop artist T.I.’s days before his sentencing on weapons charges and a series of interventions with at risk teens. So the question is: is this what is wrong with hip hop culture or is this another MTV push to try to tell us how to think, or steering the youth in the wrong direction thru mixed messages? Do convicted felons need to be ‘glorified’ with TV shows; no matter who they may be or what they now feel is important?
Sure T.I. is a hip hop notable who’s career in the rap game has brought him to a high level in hip hop culture and no one can take that from him, but what kind of message is being directed to the young people when they see a ‘light’ sentence handed down and then all the attention and ‘glorification’ directed towards T.I.’s misfortune? T.I., as many hip hop artists know, knew that the youth were looking up to him, trying to immolate his swagger, and only now is that important. Is it a little to late for redemption? Should he have taken his responsibility as a role model to the hip hop youth more serious before all this went down?
I respect T.I. for reaching out to others, especially to the hip hop youth, to help them to avoid the mistakes he has made; but still it must be shown that there are consequences for your actions.
If T.I. was not T.I. but plain old Clifford Joseph Harris Jr., he would be already incarcerated and seeking ‘redemption’ from within the walls of a federal institution.
As T.I. talks to school and community groups about how to avoid the trouble he now finds himself in, does he also communicate that he is not being handed the same sentence that many of the youth he is trying to reach would receive if they were in the same position he now finds himself in?
It is not fair to just point out T.I. and say that he received a ‘light’ sentence; it happens too many of the hip hop and rap artists who find themselves on the wrong side of the law. They either get light sentences or they get off altogether and the message that is given to the hip hop youth is that if there favorite hip hop star or rap artist can do this and get away with it, so can they – and that leads to many youth getting hung up in the system. Drugs and weapons are destroying lives and families all across this nation. Gun violence is on the rise from coast to coast and it seems no one is safe from it.
Remember ‘street cred’ is only important if your on the street; it doesn’t mean anything if your locked down alone in a cell. Your homies and street affiliates are not there doing time with you, you are there alone.
For those interested in the struggles of T.I. and his impending March 2009 sentencing for weapons charges, the program "T.I.'s Road To Redemption: 45 Days To Go" will premiere on Tuesday, February 10th at 9:00PM (ET/PT)
For more information please visit www.mtvpress.com