Gunna has made his first public statement after he was arrested in May on charges alleging he conspired to violate the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (RICO) Act. The rapper (real name Sergio Kitchens) celebrates his 29th birthday today, and penned an open letter from the Georgia facility where he is currently incarcerated.
“2022 has been one of the best years of my life, despite this difficult situation. This year I had the whole world pushing P,” Gunna begins his message, shared on Instagram. “Growing up from where I come from in a marginalized neighborhood, I never dreamt my art would change my life and the lives of my loved ones. My entire life, I’ve seen Black Men, Black Women and Black Children consistently attacked, hated, murdered, berated, belittled, silenced, judged, used and held captive.”
He continues: “I used my art form, my gift from God, to change my circumstance... I worked every day to show God how grateful I am for my gift, for my art, for my life and to be able to provide for my loved ones.”
Gunna then addresses the charges that landed him in Fulton County Jail. Gunna’s charge, a single count of conspiracy to violate the RICO act, came as part of a 56-count-indictment against Young Stoner Life (YSL), the record label helmed by influential trapper Young Thug (real name Jeffery Lamar Williams.) Young Thug and Gunna were among 27 members of the label arrested.
Gunna emphasized that he has been “falsely accused,” and said he will “never stop fighting” to clear his name.
“The picture that is being painted of me is ugly and untrue. My fans know I love to celebrate life, I love my family, I love travel, I love music, I love my fans,” Gunna wrote. “I have all faith that God will grant me justice for the purity in my heart and the innocence of my actions.”
He continued: “As a Black Man in America, it seems as though my art is only acceptable when I’m a source of entertainment for the masses. My art is not allowed to stand alone as entertainment, I’m not allowed that freedom as a Black Man in America. It is a sad reality that slavery is still alive in America today and still affecting my people. In 12 states more than half of the prison population is Black, one of those states is Georgia.”
Gunna concluded his message promising fans that he’ll continue working towards his goals, even with this new setback. “Nothing will stop me from chasing my dreams, I won’t stop being a good person, even if some unnamed and unknown accusers want the world to see me as a bad person,” the rapper wrote. “When I was free, I tried to be good and kind to the community around me and, when I am released, I will do the same thing all over again. We still pushing P: Power, Prayer, Progress, Passion, Productivity, Praise, Precision, Peace, Prosperity, Patience, Pride and Persistence.”