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In a recent interview with Complex magazine T.I. said this of his jail time…

“When I was goin’ through it (prison), I really felt like it added insult to injury. The lesson had already been learned. I already understood the errors in my ways and made the adjustments necessary.

“It did make me worse in a sense that, before I went in, I was already on the path of positivity. Putting me in prison took me off that path a little bit, and now I’m working to get back on that path – or at least back on the path to the extent that I was before I went in.

“I’m still not as bad as I was before this incident, but I lost a little bit of my positive focus during that period of incarceration. Being in that environment and having those daily surroundings, it’s going to affect you.”

Although on some level I can understand the point T.I. is trying to make. He is insinuating that he knew what he did was wrong and he decided that he was going to make a change with his life right before he went to jail. His time in jail somehow halted that progress.

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However, here is the problem I have with the statement, if you knew that what you were doing was wrong then why did you continue to do it? If you were aware enough to realize that you were making a mistake, why continue on that path? Secondly, if the case was that you realized at a later time after the incident that what you did was wrong, that does not mean that you should have been free from the short time you did spend in prison? You still by law committed a punishable act. The law does not care as much about how you felt on the inside while committing the crime, they care about the act that you did.

Am I the only one who thinks that T.I. may be sending the wrong message to his young fans? Usually when celebrities do jail stints their PR people do damage control by instructing them to tell the world about the lesson that they learned and how much it has helped them to grow and molded them into a better man or woman. They also go on to say how they would never commit such a crime again. Which brings me to my final question. Where the hell are T.I.’s people? Why aren’t they on top of this? Why are they not instructing him on how to play the game properly? Sometimes when you are in the public eye and are receiving accolades and fans you have to put aside the bravado and appear to be remorseful even if on the inside you could care less. Some people could take this response as him implying that he is more upset about getting caught and having to face any time for his crime at all.

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Was T.I’s response to that interview inappropriate? Did it send the wrong message about his experience and the lesson he learned while in jail? One thing is or sure if you are  a Black celebrity, who has served prison time, the last thing you want to say is that prison made you worse. No matter the connotation.

Quote Via Rhymes With Snitch

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