Justice for Jussie: The Curious Case of the Jussie Smollet Attack By Rashad KuKu

I am sure you have all heard about the Jussie Smollet situation. For those who don’t know who he is, Jussie Smollet is an actor on Fox’s hit show Empire, as well as a singer.

Earlier this year, news broke about an alleged hate crime that Jussie faced in January. Allegedly, at 2 am in the morning, he was attacked by two homophobic and racist white men. This was an important detail because there are attacks against the LGBTQIA+ community and against Black men every year. Sometimes, these attacks lead to death. It’s not just about one person. So, my immediate response was to believe him.


This was an important detail because there are attacks against the LGBTQIA+ community and against Black men every year. Sometimes, these attacks lead to death. It’s not just about one person.

According to Smollet, they beat him up, poured bleach on him, and tied a rope around his neck. Jussie states that the reason he was out so late was because he wanted some food from Subway. When the story first broke, everyone was in shock. We could not believe that the beloved actor was a victim of a serious hate crime. Many people were screaming justice for Jussie until some details about his case got out that did not match with the story he told.

First, Chicago police said that something did not add up. Then they said there was no evidence that the actor had a part in this situation. And finally, after issuing a warrant for his arrest, the Chicago police said that Jussie Smollet paid two Nigerian men, one of them who worked on Empire, to stage the attack so the he could allegedly get more money from Empire for his role. With all this information out, Jussie has been charged with filing a false police report and is now a suspect in the case.


I have been one of the ones who has been screaming justice for Jussie from the beginning. Even though all this information is getting out, I still feel like he is telling the truth.

           

Although I believe him, I just have a couple of questions that are still unanswered. My main question is, how did the attackers know he was going to come out and get a five-dollar foot long or whatever he was getting from Subway? I just don’t understand.

For those who do not believe his version of the story, I have a question for you. Why would he lie about this? What could he possibly gain from this? I guess the reason I still want to believe him is because attacks like this happen all the time to members of the LGBTQIA+ community. Another reason why I still want to believe him is because so many celebrities I respect have spoke on his character and said he is not the type of person to do this. If in fact he is lying, then he needs to go to jail. If he is found innocent, then everyone needs to apologize for putting this man through hell.

I want to know how you are feeling about this. Voice your comments below about this situation.

3 Comments

  • Nigel Jacobs says:

    As someone who is apart of the queer community, just as you did, I instantly believed that a great injustice had been done to Jussie Smollet. I was disgusted to hear something this horrible happened but I was not surprised because situations like this have happened in America for decades. I guess if I was surprised about something, I was surprised that they attacked someone that popular, especially given the political climate of the day. However, when they found evidence that this maybe a hoax, the only thing I could feel was anger. Personally, since I am a visibly-open member of the queer community, I constantly fear that I may be attacked at any moment and the Smollet case made it even worse. When I heard it was a possible lie, I felt betrayed. How selfish do you have to be to cause widespread panic for your own personal gain? I’ll still wait for the process to be over, but I really can’t handle this emotional rollercoaster.

  • Anthony Felder says:

    Unfortunately, I think that we may never discover the truth. I do not have enough faith in the criminal justice system and its courts processes to come to an honest verdict. Guilty doesn’t always mean guilty, and innocent doesn’t always mean innocent. In a society that often erases assault victim’s narrative, I would definitely be wary of going against Mr. Smollett. However, also knowing that money does drive people to do things out of their character, I am a little on the fence.

  • Nicholas Arosemena says:

    In the age of high speed information transfer and the 24 hour news cycle everyone is looking to be the center of attention. Publicity stunts have become almost common place because the more someone is talked about the more money they are in position to make whether the publicity is good or bad. I can see why a lot of people would believe that Jussie Smollett would especially if his position at Empire was under threat since the popular show is very lucrative for all of its participants. I will admit that this only being a stunt for publicity and money does not fit with my image of Jussie, but there have been many times when pressure has caused beloved actors in the community to behave out of character, even if they later regretted it.

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