Actor Jussie Smollett is maintaining to claim his innocence after allegations came out that he staged his own attack.
Smollet previously claimed that he was jumped and beaten by two men who were saying statements such as, “This MAGA country f*****, This MAGA country n*****.” The police report stated that the two men poured a chemical on his head and then tied a noose around his neck.
Sympathetic tweets started to come in, some from politicians after he posted the picture of his cut face in the hospital. Senator Kamala Harris of California, along with other politicians, referred to the incident as “a modern-day lynching.”
During a press conference a few days later, the Chicago Police Department reported that the attack may have been a hoax. The media was flowing with stories on the scandal, saying that he staged his attack for attention.
When the allegations started, President Trump tweeted, “Smollett – what about MAGA and the tens of millions of people you insulted with your racist and dangerous comments!?”
Many well–known right-wing politicians and media personalities are using this scandal to make Democrats look foolish. For example, media personality Ben Shapiro wrote, “There are large-scale incentives for jumping on every story before the facts are clear,” using Harris’ and Booker’s tweets as examples. “And then [the Democrats] had to backtrack radically, suggesting as the hoax emerged that they had to wait for more facts.” Shapiro is mocking Democrats here by saying that they are hypocrites.
Shapiro isn’t the only one. John Doyle, a rightist media personality, stated that “In America, we have to fake our oppression.” Republicans are using this to say that there are no hate crimes in America. They are making Smollett be the face of people faking crimes. According to Justice.gov, there were more than 4,000 reported hate crimes in 2017 based on race/ethnicity, and more than 1,000 based on sexual orientation. Republicans are using Smollett’s fraudulence to convince people that hate crimes aren’t real. Hate crimes are real and happen every day. This is a very dangerous, delusional mindset to have.
This is what is wrong with our country. Politics are all trying to make the other side look bad. We use terrible incidents and try to make them benefit our ideas. Instead, we should be working together to find solutions. Nobody, Republican or Democrat, should like want nor want hate crimes to happen. We should not think of a hate crime as another pawn in the political chess game.