T.I. on Ride or Die Chicks


Vibe / November 30, 2011

Surely you’ve heard by now that in the year-end issue of VIBE, T.I. finally addressed 50 Cent (and others) who believed his wife, Tameka “Tiny” Cottle should have taken the rap for him when the couple was charged with the possession of a controlled substance in September 2010. You may recall that at the time of the arrest, T.I. was rehabbing his career and had only been out of jail since March 2010, after a 10-month prison stint for gun charges. He was on probation at the time of the drug arrest.

Though the drug charges were dropped, T.I. served 11 months in prison for violating his parole. T.I. told VIBE that his wife taking the fall was never an option.

“I’ma tell you, 50 Cent and anybody else, we not gonna have no discussion about what my ole lady shoulda, woulda, coulda done for anything as it pertains to me,” said TI, whose new reality show Family Hustle featuring his wife and six children debuts next week. “I’m the only one in my family that’s gonna take a lick when it pertains to the legal system.”

He added, “A person that stands behind his woman for a criminal charge] is a coward anyway.”

T.I. stood firm in his stance, even when VIBE pushed, insisting that Tiny was unlikely to serve time. “She wasn’t gonna catch it period, ’cause I’m there,” he said. “That wasn’t even a consideration. Even if she asked me to I would’ve been like, “Nah, you trippin’.”

He continued, “That’s a discussion between me and another man. Not with the mother of my children. Not with the nurturer of my household.”

Media outlets scrambled to hear what 50 would say in response—cause everyone knew he wasn’t going to say something— but they were overlooking the most important aspect of the interview: TI had just kicked the long upheld idea of being a ride or-die chick off her pedestal. Frankly, it was about a damn time.

There’s no doubt in my mind Tiny didn’t offer to take the charges, despite what T.I. implies in the interview. This is a woman who, after all, has been with him for ten years, raises six children with him, ignored infidelity rumors and even confirmed speculations that she had fondled her husband in a prisoner visiting room. Clearly, she’s down for a lot. Their relationship might not be one to emulate, but T.I.’s point about not putting her in a position to protect him is worth noting.

The “ideal” down-for-whatever chick who rides for her man at all costs (see The Lox’s “Ryde or Die Bitch”or Foxy’s verse on “Ain’t No N****”) was a disastrous model for women who always went a step further than loyalty and into the realm of completely lacking common sense. The idea of literally being down for whatever, like taking a charge for your man? That’s not commitment, it’s stupidity.

Just as T.I. explained, any man who would expect his woman, especially his wife and mother of his children, to do his bidding, really isn’t so much a man anyway. And he’s definitely not the type you should maintain a relationship with. Kudos this man for being a real one, and saying so.

Demetria L. Lucas is the author of “A Belle in Brooklyn: The Go-to Girl for Advice on Living Your Best Single Life” (Atria) in stores now. Follow her on Twitter @abelleinbk