TUNNEL VISION

Kodak Wuz Up,

First off, “Tunnel Vision” is my shit. I saw recently that its now no. 8 on Billboard making it your first top ten hit. Big ups to you on that. You’ve been on fire too lately. Your features on Gotti and Rae Sremmurd’s albums, along with the new track with A Boogie, all 🔥🔥🔥. I could feel the momentum building towards your debut album Painting Pictures.

The day I heard you got arrested, I remember my whole vibe changing. 100 to 0 real quick. I felt a sense of disappointment. This feeling was new to me. I’ve seen rappers and entertainers get arrested my whole life. Gucci, Wayne, TIP, all served time and it never bothered me. I struggled with this feeling for a couple days.

Why is Kodak’s arrest bothering me?

         Then it hit me. Timing. Not timing as it pertains to where you are in your career, but the timing of where I am in my life. From 2009 to 2014 when the above-mentioned rappers were going through their legal troubles, I was in college. When they went away it was easy to move on to the next artist until they returned. Fast forward to the present, and I’m in an entirely different space. Right now I’m in my third year as a middle school teacher, and I see the impact you have on today’s youth. This is why your situation stuck with me.

          Charles Barkley had the infamous “I’m not a role model” commercial with Nike. His reasoning, “just because I dunk a ball doesn’t mean I should raise your kids”. And he had a point. However, the issue is you don’t just sign up to be a role model. There is no application process. I don’t know your take on the role model situation, but whether you want to be one or not, you are.

I’m sure the majority of your shows are catered to the 21 and over demographic, so I don’t know how often you see the youth. But I see it everyday. I’ve seen hundreds of students simultaneously Kodak bop as soon as the beat drops for “No Flockin”. They play your music in their headphones as they walk to class, and don’t let me get started on the number of photo shoots I’ve seen after school where they pose and smile just like you. To be honest, it was my students that put me on to your music.

When I was in middle school, there wasn’t any young artist who was from the same type of neighborhood as me, someone who saw the same shit I saw growing up, and was able to take all that and turn it into DOPE music. They identify with you. They see how hard you had to grind to make it out the projects and they’re trying to replicate it. I tell them all the time to apply the grind they see in you to every aspect of their life.

You’re last tape Lil Big Pac talked about the struggle you have between fame and the streets. Whenever you find yourself in that tug of war, I ask that you think about the kid that draws your tats on their face. The one that compares your grind to make it in music to his basketball journey. Think about the kid who named you his favorite rapper because he admires how much you want to provide and take care of your son. I wish you the best with your legal situation and especially with your career. You’re the voice of the youth; don’t take away their voice.

Signed,

@henn_griffey

dsc_5977“HENNY WORLD ORDER” TEES STILL AVAILABLE

henncrediblydope.bigcartel.com

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