Gary Chambers Jr. discusses his viral campaign ad for the Louisiana Senate bid

AllHipHop caught up with Gary Chambers to discuss his Baton Rouge roots, how he got into politics, his third run for office, his viral ad, Big Freedia endorsement, and more!

Politics is a world unto itself, but there’s something about Gary Chambers which we never tire of. You might recognize his face in his video which has gone completely viral, unofficially declaring his place as the first politician to smoke a joint in his campaign ad.

The 36-year-old Baton Rouge, Louisiana native lives by the motto “Do Good, Seek Justice,” and that’s exactly what he’s doing to try to decriminalize marijuana laws and push for prison reform. for black people who are locked up for weed. . Instantly sparking a new conversation around cannabis, Chambers is a proud democrat, social justice activist and father, viewing the flower as “a beneficial drug” that can be medicinal for anyone.

Chambers hosted a Wake and Bake fundraiser at The Big House in Los Angeles, raising awareness not only for himself (as he aims to unseat Republican Senator John Kennedy), but also for the importance of justice and of social equality.


AllHipHop: What was a young Gary like growing up in Baton Rouge?

Gary Chambers Jr.: I would say a fairly normal life. I grew up in a middle class family, went to good schools, and had a pretty decent life as a kid. My parents are an integral part of my life today and they were phenomenal parents to me.

AllHipHop: How did you get into politics?

Gary Chambers Jr.: Actually by accident. I was doing advocacy because some things in my community were not going the way I thought they should. I started talking about these things. When I met my politicians, I realized I could do a little better and get involved.

AllHipHop: Have you studied? How did you get involved?

Gary Chambers Jr.: Just be involved: show up to meetings, be in the community. The more meetings you attend, the more you learn about the issues. The more you show up, the more people recognize what’s going on. The more you recognize what is going on, the more ideas you have on how to fix it. That’s all a politician is.

AllHipHop: How does it feel to stand for election for the third time?

Gary Chambers Jr.: It feels good, it’s different for sure. We have support across the country, and people like you are showing up with the weed today. [laughs] But Free the Tree is a conversation we want to help lead and get to the point of full legalization. It affects a lot of people, but it’s also big business. We need the justice component, but we also need the equity component. I want to help lead these conversations not only about cannabis, but also about health care and environmental justice. Pay all other areas.

AllHipHop: It’s crazy, I interviewed Freeway Rick Ross yesterday. We talked about how people are locked up for weed. How does this make you feel and what should happen?

Gary Chambers Jr.: It’s wrong. I feel like we have to do the things necessary to adjust it. This is why we have made it a critical point in our policies.


AllHipHop: Talk about your ad going viral, “37 seconds.” Did you anticipate this?

Gary Chambers Jr.: We thought we might get a million views. We didn’t know we’d get 6 million on our page, so it probably got 30 million views on social media when we looked at all the different platforms it was shared on. The reality is that it shows you how affected people are by this because it’s not just “this is such a great ad”, it connects to so many people.

AllHipHop: What was your goal in creating it? Because I saw that it only took 5 minutes to film.

Gary Chambers Jr.: To cut through the noise, to try to be part of the national conversation. To get people to pay attention to Louisiana, to get people to recognize that this race is winnable there. I think we did it effectively.

AllHipHop: What does Louisiana represent for you?

Gary Chambers Jr.: All. I can move anywhere in the world where I want to move. I chose to live in Baton Rouge because I believe in growing where I am planted and making that community thrive. We go to other places and we make those cities and places great. I want to see us do the same for Louisiana.

AllHipHop: Talk about your favorite musician. Who do you listen to?

Gary Chambers Jr.: I don’t fit into this game. I don’t have a favorite artist. If you ask me what I listen to all the time, it could be a mix of Frankie Beverly, Chance the Rapper. I’m quite eclectic.

AllHipHop: How was it to get support from Big Freedia?

Gary Chambers Jr.: It was drugs. It was a lot of work, but once we got Freedia, Freedia was all in and very supportive of the work we were doing. I’m a huge fan and bouncy music is huge in Louisiana, so having Freedia’s support was important.

AllHipHop: Talk about doing this fundraising event today at The Big House. What does it mean to be in Los Angeles?

Gary Chambers Jr.: I’m excited. I think we have a good group of people here. Some elected officials from California are here to support us and I am grateful to them. Louis and the team here did a great job helping us get the job. We have to raise a lot of money, we are running against a man with 10 million dollars. California tends to be very supportive of progressive politics and so you go where the money is. Where does the money reside!

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