Jussie Smollett facing jail time

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Jussie Smollett facing jail time

Abigail Bauman, Editor in Chief

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Recently we were all blown away by the news of the attack on Empire star Jussie Smollett. If you have not heard the news, according to Smollett, he was attacked by two MAGA supporters that called him racial and homophobic slurs. He claimed that his ribs were broken which they were found out to be only bruised. He also claimed that his two attackers poured bleach on him and put a noose around Smollett’s neck.

These attacks were clearly a hate crime against Smollett because he is a gay black man. I was appalled and very upset when I heard this news. Imagine sending your son out into the world and someone attacks them for being who they are. If a celebrity can be assaulted like that, any of us could be next.

But of course more news regarding Smollett’s story broke. The attackers were apprehended. And when more news broke, Smollett’s story started falling apart. First it was found out that Smollett waited 45 minutes to call the police, which was very odd and suspicious but not completely unheard of. When police came he still had the noose around his neck, which seems to me like a very unlikely action. Why would you keep a noose around your neck for 45 minutes? That’s like having someone give you a wedgie and you just leave the underwear bunched up your buttcrack for 45 minutes.

After these odd series of events, the police looked more into his story. He had contact with his alleged attackers before and after the attack. His attackers claimed that they were paid by Smollett to fake the attack. Smollett was videotaped on CCTV cameras entering an elevator and speaking to his attackers. The most damning evidence was that he wrote his attackers a check in order to pay them for the attack. My biggest question is what did he write in the memo line, for “the fake hate crime attack lol ;P”

Smollett could be facing jail time. He could face charges for filing a police report which is punishable by one to three years. He could also be facing other related charges. In my personal opinion, this whole story was extremely upsetting. Not only was this a really damaging act to his image, the thing that really upsets me is that he’s discrediting all other victims of real hate crime. If one person could fake a hate crime, anyone could.

The revelation of this attack being faked hurts not only people of color but also people that are a part of the LGBTQ+ community. Hate crimes happen every day and they’re real and they hurt real people. After a hate crime people usually need therapy and could need hospitalization. People can be murdered for the color of their skin or because of who they love or who they identify as. The biggest take away from this is that we can’t let someone like Smollett discredit victims of real hate crimes. Smollett is no longer the victim, he’s the villain in this story.

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