Jussie Smollett’s acting career has officially come to an end—at least for now—after what appears to be one of his best, most compelling, and believable performances, based on a screenplay he wrote and directed. Somehow, the former Empire star persuaded half the country that he had been targeted for assault by Trump supporters because of his ethnicity and sexual orientation. If his acting in the courtroom had been on the same level as his typecasting, America would never have known the truth.
Smollett’s acting career has faded since the incident, and he lost his role as a singer-songwriter on Empire, a Fox television hip-hop drama that ended in 2020. However, the case took an unexpected turn in the spring of 2019 when the state’s attorney’s office dropped the 16-count indictment against him in exchange for Smollett forfeiting his $10,000 bond without admitting any wrongdoing. Many wondered if his friendship with Michelle Obama had played a role, and the dismissal drew criticism from then-Mayor Rahm Emanuel and the city’s police superintendent, who called the reversal a miscarriage of justice. A five-month investigation concluded that prosecution of Smollett was warranted.
When the attack first made the news, dozens of celebrities rushed to support the 39-year-old before the hoax allegations came to light. Here are a few from Twitter.
While some of the responses were pretty mild and restrained, several others impugned Americans, Trump supporters, “white supremacy,” and discrimination on the alleged crime, falling for the bait that Smollett had laid for them. Were these posts really necessary?
With today’s guilty verdict, the actor has been convicted on five felony charges, including lying to the police about the alleged hate crime attack. With his use of the phrase “MAGA country,” he gave millions of people another reason to hate MAGA supporters. With his disgusting lies revealed, millions of MAGA supporters now have a reason to be angry at LGBT activists and the people who disparaged them without evidence. This has sown irreparable division. Has Smollett thought about how Americans would feel if a white man had falsely claimed he had been attacked by men yelling about Obama? Of course he didn’t think about it. He still hasn’t admitted his guilt. This guy actually must have thought this would help his career.
Even prominent politicians were quick to pile on Americans. After all, Smollett blamed the fake attack on Trump supporters, so ever “thirsty for attention” democrat was quick to virtue signal their support for more “likes” and retweets.
All of these posts were within 24 hours of the incident being reported in the news. Is it too much to expect lawmakers to wait until more facts are available before they comment on a divisive case like this? On the other hand, Dave Chappelle, who never took Smollett’s story seriously, has been vindicated, and so have any other dubious onlookers. Will any of these Hollywood and Washington, DC supporters of Smollett issue an apology or a statement for supporting his lies? Or like all the other times they’ve grossly beclowned themselves, will this also go down the memory hole?
According to the Chicago Sun Times, in his closing arguments yesterday, Special Prosecutor Dan Webb said, “It’s just plain wrong for Mr. Smollett, a successful Black actor, to outright denigrate something as serious, as heinous, as a real hate crime. To denigrate it and then make sure it involved words and symbols that have such horrible historical significance in our country.”
As the jury read the guilty verdict today, Smollett remained calm. The judge said he’ll order a pre-sentencing investigation, and attorneys will speak over the phone to set a date for pre-sentencing motions. The jurors, will not talk to the media today, according to the judge. The charge is a class 4 felony that carries a maximum punishment of three years in jail, although experts say Smollett would most likely be sentenced to probation and community service if convicted.
As far as his acting career goes, it is probably over.
Throughout the world and even here in America, there is plenty of genuine hatred. Traditional values, like making America great, are not something to be despised. Believing in American greatness isn’t even a bad thing. So, if we want to eradicate hatred, we must also eliminate false, nasty allegations of hatred such as what was perpetrated here. I won’t hold my breath for any apologies.