Drake, Meek Mill, Killer Mike & More Unite For Rapper Ralo's Freedom.
Drake, Killer Mike & More Sign Letter To President Biden Calling For The Release Of Atlanta Rapper Ralo
With cannabis slowly becoming legalized across the country, more attention is being placed on the many people of color who have been incarcerated at disproportionate rates for weed-related offenses.
Take for instance, the new initiative from cannabis clemency activist group Mission Green, which partnered with entertainers like Drake, T.I., Killer Mike, Meek Mill, Quavo, 2 Chainz, Freeway, Lil Yachty, Kodak Black, NFL Hall-of-Famer Deion Sanders, NBA Hall-of-Famer Kevin Garnett, NBA All-Star John Wall, Atlanta Falcons player Julio Jones, and more, in a letter to President Biden advocating for Terrell “Ralo” Davis’s release from prison.
“On behalf of Terrell Davis and his family, we strongly urge you to grant clemency for Mr. Davis, who is serving federal time for nonviolent marijuana offense,” the letter reads per Forbes. “The undersigned— musicians, actors, athletes, filmmakers, current and former elected and appointed government officials, advocates, and business leaders—strongly believe that justice necessitates the exercise of clemency in this case. Our nation’s view of cannabis has evolved, and it is indefensible to incarcerate citizens based on the unduly harsh attitudes of past generations.”
Ralo has been incarcerated for nearly three years for his alleged connection to a drug trafficking case. He was charged with two federal counts of intent to distribute marijuana after 444 pounds of weed were found on a private plane in 2018, and faces up to eight years in jail if convicted. At the time of his arrest, Ralo was bursting onto the scene thanks to popular songs like “Lil Cali & Pakistan,” and his connections to the likes of Gucci Mane and Young Thug.
Recreational cannabis use is now legal in 16 states and medically permitted in over 20 states, including Ralo’s home state of Georgia. Yet because Black people are four-times more likely to be arrested for weed than their white counterparts, many Black entrepreneurs are stuck behind bars watching the country progress around them, which doesn’t sit right with Ralo’s peers.
“At a time where so many young White people and others are capitalizing off of marijuana’s new legitimacy to see this brother sit and suffer is sickening. He is a real one and helped his community, and now he is a hostage of the state,” Killer Mike tweeted recently, while T.I. asked: “How is it ok for a white man in Oregon, Nevada, or Colorado to grow, smoke, and profit millions from marijuana but a young black man from the Westside of Atlanta who’s been nothing less than a service and a pillar to his community can be jailed and taken away from his family for allegedly doing the same thing?”
Drake also showed support for Ralo in the song “Lemon Pepper Freestyle” from his Scary Hours 2 EP.
“Matthew Maddox called in the pit boss, double checkin’/‘The number’s all good, just pay me, I’m at the Rhino,’” Drake raps. “Real life, the whole fam’ goons like Ralo.”
Along with resounding support from elected officials and entertainers, the letter uses Biden’s own words as a call to justice for Ralo.
“I think we should decriminalize marijuana, period,” President Biden said in 2019. “And I think everyone – anyone who has a record should be let out of jail, their records expunged, be completely zeroed out.”
View Mission Green’s full letter to President Biden on behalf of Ralo below.