— Highly Questionable (@HQonESPN) January 6, 2017
Gucci Mane hasn’t shied away from talking about his past struggles since his release from prison in 2016. He’s been busy collaborating with some of hip hop’s best at the moment and trying to prove to the world that he’s a changed man, but nothing is more powerful than his openness at discussing how he reached this point. “Drying out” isn’t something you’d typically willingly choose to do as a free person, so one can only imagine the difficulty in doing so while in prison. There’s a good reason why addiction treatment has so many steps towards recovery and people warn against doing it “cold turkey.” But in that moment when you’re faced with what you are while on the drugs as opposed to without them, there is motivation no matter where you stand in life.
That’s what I took from Gucci Mane’s interview with Dan Le Batard and Bomani Jones on Friday’s Highly Questionable. He has discussed the benefits of being in prison in the past, claiming it saved him from hurting himself or someone else during his controversial interview on The Breakfast Club back in December. He reiterates that point here, but also talks about his mental health and addiction in a way that could be helpful to those in the same position. It’s hard enough for people to discuss their demons in a closed setting, so doing so on national television is a step folks can look up to.
Also, being in such a competitive field that typically holds the “tough guy” image to some high standard, there’s a lot of respect to be given for mentioning things like paranoia and comparing his own mindset to a soldier coming off the battlefield. Mental health is a discussion to have and Gucci Mane choosing to do so in a setting that could help other people is truly admirable. Also I’m glad I now know about the Bart Simpson chain and its crazy price tag.