AceShowbiz - Meek Mill has written an open letter in which he urges his younger self "to turn your mugshot into a flashlight that exposes an incredibly unjust judicial system".
The 31-year-old, real name Robert Rihmeek Williams, addresses his 19-year-old self in the letter published in XXL magazine.
Stars - including Beyonce Knowles, Jay-Z and Kevin Hart - campaigned for him to be released after he was sent to prison in Pennsylvania in December (17) for a probation violation linked to a 2008 conviction. Meek was released after serving five months.
"It's your job to show poor black kids from 12th street to Compton how to go hard for their rights," he writes. "I need you to focus on the weight of your talent and how it aligns with your purpose. I know, right now, life is tough, but you have to believe me when I say it's only temporary."
In the letter, Meek shares with his teenage self how successful his career becomes - including recording with Mariah Carey and being able to buy luxury cars and designer watches.
"But you wanna know what tops it all? Mom never having to worry about money again because you believed in yourself," he says.
He admits that things will get "easier and more difficult" for African Americans over the next 12 years - but he can be an inspiration to the youth, "You have the ability to turn your mugshot into a flashlight that exposes an incredibly unjust judicial system."
Meek was arrested in August 2017 for reckless driving. Although the charges were later dropped, a judge ruled the arrest itself was a breach of his probation. The Philadelphia-born rapper was sentenced to two to four years in jail for the breach, before being released in April.
He ends the letter by telling young Meek kids are "depending on your rhymes for representation".
"Think about how abandoned the folks sitting in jail for a crime they didn't commit feel. Think about how you felt," he urges.