February 22, 2019

(Disclaimer: I always respect due process rights so I will stipulate up front that “Empire” actor Jussie Smollett is still telling castmates that he “swears to God” he didn’t fabricate the attack on him, and his attorneys insist that Chicago authorities trampled on his presumption of innocence by portraying him as definitely guilty in their press conference.  Duly noted. 

Thursday’s press conference by Chicago police about the alleged racist, homophobic attack on Smollett was remarkable not only for what was said, but for what wasn’t said.

The stated part that made news was that authorities not only flatly declared that Smollett conspired with his alleged attackers to stage a hoax assault, but that he was also behind the threatening letter sent to him earlier that was dusted with crushed aspirin, apparently to look like anthrax or some similar dangerous substance.

They claim that Smollett did it as a publicity stunt because he was dissatisfied with his TV salary, and when the letter didn’t get enough publicity, he concocted the assault hoax, paying the brothers $3500 to play along.  If true, sending a hoax terror threat through the mail could add federal charges that will make it far worse for him than the 4th-degree felony charge Chicago leveled. 

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Chicago Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson was also remarkably blunt in blasting Smollett, saying, “Why would anyone, especially an African-American man, use the symbolism of a noose to make false accusations?  How could someone look at the hatred and suffering associated with that symbol and see an opportunity to manipulate that symbol to further his own public profile?”   He said Smollett “took advantage of the pain and anger of racism to promote his career.”

What went unsaid was also remarkable. For instance, the absence of any cover-your-rear weasel words, like “allegedly.”  Smollett’s lawyers were furious about this, but the Chicago police must think they’ve got an ironclad case because they didn’t even bother to pretend there was any question that the letter and the assault were hoaxes and Smollett was behind both.

Also going unsaid: the obvious political motivation and the real hate crime aimed at Trump supporters.  Chicago authorities claimed Smollett’s motivation was boosting his profile and paycheck, and that his victim was Chicago’s image.  But he’s been known for years as a rabidly partisan Trump-hater, and it’s no coincidence that the cover story was that he was attacked by racist, homophobic Trump supporters who yelled, “This is MAGA country!”  Just claiming he’d been mugged would’ve been more plausible, but he had to assert the favorite false derogatory stereotype of the left’s political opponents.  Never mind that it slandered 63 million Trump voters, deepened racial divisions and might have sparked violent retaliation against innocent people. 

President Trump hit the nail on the head when he tweeted, “What about MAGA and the tens of millions of people you insulted with your racist and dangerous comments!?” 

Ben Shapiro had perhaps the best response.  Celebrities, liberal politicians and media figures accepted Smollett’s bizarre claim at face value because it reinforced their false notions about the other side.  Shapiro noted that playing into that prejudice can reap big rewards, and if it turns out to be a hoax, there’s little price to pay (for anyone but Smollett.)  Some who rushed to condemn are simply deleting their tweets and waiting to join the next Twitter-bred mob. Others are even blaming Trump for “creating the atmosphere” that made them believe and spread a false claim.  And those who refuse to learn from the past are doomed to repeat it, over and over.

As Shapiro observes, “…We should all wait next time we hear a story too good to be true.  But we won't. Nobody knows who the next Jussie Smollett will be. But within a few weeks, we'll surely know.”


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Comments 1-11 of 11

  • Linda Olds

    02/24/2019 09:47 AM

    If the Chicago police are right, and if Smollett is convicted, this is a tragedy. He brought it on himself by his unreasonable hatred for President Trump and his followers. He had everything, and he threw it away.
    If he gets away with his crimes, it would be a tragedy for America.

  • Mary Peterson

    02/22/2019 04:28 PM

    This situation reminds me of the Daniel Holtzclaw case that I've commented on before. Daniel is a former OKC PD officer. Three years ago he was charged with multiple counts of sexual abuse. It all stemmed from one person filing a complaint. That same day the sexual crimes unit brought Daniel in for an interview. (This can all be found in "Michelle Malkin Investigates and other sites). The next day or two, the police chief had a news conference stating that Daniel might be a serial rapist. The detectives then canvassed the area and found 13 victims that alleged that Daniel assaulted them. They were all from the area that Daniel patrolled, a high drug and prostitute area. They were told that "we have a tip that you may have been assaulted by a police officer". Not one complaint was proved. However Daniel was found guilty and sentenced to 263 years. My point today is that with the police chief's public statement, before the investigation was completed, tainted the mind of any potential jury member. Subsequently, in the back of your mind you are going to think, "well, the police chief thinks he's guilty". I, of course, don't know if Smollett did this or not, but he should have the benefit of a fair trial, and I don't think that will happen now. If he did do it, he should pay the consequences. Let the evidence be the ruling factor, not emotion.

  • Alicia Marrazzo

    02/22/2019 03:09 PM

    Our president is blame for all the evil and bad people do.Nobody gives him credit for all the good he is doing.We know better and God knows better.What a rotten society and media we have.??I love my country and i stand behind our President.????????.This young man is a very disturbed person.He needs prayers.

  • Helen Bremer

    02/22/2019 02:33 PM

    Thank you for all you do
    to save this country. We need millions more just like you. Love you and your daughter.

  • Amelia Little

    02/22/2019 02:13 PM

    Someone needs to first take journalism classes in college to task for their failed teaching on what journalism is. Then, make all journalist--especially those who are journalists in their eyes only) take remedial classes. Get back to vetting an issue (thoroughly) before printing or airing it. Put the emphasis on facts rather than "getting the scoop" on all other so-called journalists. Even though it might rage on social media for a few days, they can certainly calm that down some when they report ON THE FACTS, after an INVESTIGATION. Some of the politicians have backtracked a little now that the truth has come out. I don't think hoolywood has--I'm sure this will still be a big rant on their part at whatever the next award show comes along. kamala harris made a fairly stupid backtracking statement. After being presented with the investigative FACTS, she now says, well, she'll wait for the facts to come out before further comments. I don't know what further facts will come out, but the ones (like smollet's self-delivered aspirin letter and his evoking his brother's name when stopped for DUI) that have come out since aren't exactly making smollet look any better. I did read where is role on Empire is already gone. Wonder if that network will use him in some other program or if they will just say bye-bye. After, of course, paying out whatever money is left on what was probably a fairly lucrative contract. Even if he wasn't happy with his salary, I'm betting the farm it made regular citizens' income look pretty paltry. Oh, and forget the slap on the wrist--throw the book at him this time.

  • Pamela Rowntree

    02/22/2019 02:12 PM

    You are the best - and your daughteras well!!!! Brave and courageous and undaunted!! We all belong to the "same family" - the family of God through Jesus and I pray daily for you all as He has certainly placed you both and many other believers at the foot of power - and in the midst of the (God's and ours) "Enemy's" target!! He certainly is shooting all the arrow he can to try and bring down what he hates - God;s people having an influence in the govt! Isn't it interesting that he tries to use so MANY different means to get a foot in the door, so to speak, and divide and conquer. BUT - he knows hsi time is short and what his end will be and is working to take as many with him as he can and to weaken "the family" so they will dishonor God. You and Sara are front and center and so I pray God's hedge about you - and Mike Pence and others behind the scenes to protect your minds and heart above all! Thanks is too small a word to express what I and so many others feel for you who stand in the front line of battle and keep your honor and witness for Jesus Christ - AND for the clarity to bring as in this article to the often mussdy waters of a situation as it gets reported from so many directions - what's a person to believe?-- and then you pop up in writing or on Fox News and throw light onto it!! Keep up the good fight!! 1 John 4:4!!!! Zephaniah 3:17!!!! Much more to say -- but will leave it at that. In His strong grip, Pam Rowntree

  • Elizabeth A Slack

    02/22/2019 01:56 PM

    Communism as made a foothold in the Western hemisphere. Putin is making threats regarding our delivery of aid to Venezuela. Russia and China are partnering to displace the United States as the the world's super power. China can put a stranglehold on shipping in the South China Sea. Iran is running naval exercises. And, the media is focused on Jussie Who? and Kamala Who? and Omar Who?

  • Joseph

    02/22/2019 01:55 PM

    I have the tendency to believe the Chicago Police spokesman as he is also a black cop when he said Smullett was guilty.

  • Yvonne Williams Lowry

    02/22/2019 01:35 PM

    "Celebrities, liberal politicians and media figures accepted Smollett’s bizarre claim at face value because it reinforced their false notions about the other side." I totally agree with this statement but, what is really sad is that while all of these Liberals are deleting all of the BS they posted, they will turn around and jump on the very next thing they see and do it all over again like a bunch of witless idiots. In my 69 years I have never seen anything like what is going on in our country and around the world. I have a visual of God looking down at us and shaking his head in disgust.

  • mark spowage

    02/22/2019 01:24 PM

    border solution with or without the wall. simple way to pay for the wall !!
    mexico makes big $ from crime. THAT WILL STOP
    mexico will now make big $ from trade an extra billion/mo
    as a reward for making it illegal to cross the border except @ port of entry
    us will avoid billions in costs of crime & illegal crossings
    any crossing will cost mexico about 100k or more from the bonus billion @ month
    savings will pay for the wall !!

  • Harry C. Brooks

    02/22/2019 12:23 PM

    Shortly after President Trump was elected, a Jewish cemetery was vandalized in the St. Louis area. This was national news for weeks , with comments like " Is this what we can expect from Donald Trump's America"? VP Pence even came to help with the cleanup. Then, when the real perp was caught, and he was not a Trump supporter( and black), they offered up a lame excuse: Oh, he was drunk, and mad that his friend threw him out of the car, so he desecrated a cemetery?!?! Sorry, I don't believe it, but it went unchallenged by the mainstream media and this story disappeared. I believe there was a sinister intent to stir up hatred and division, just as in the Smullett case. I challenge you, Gov. Huckabee, to use your resources to expose this for what it is, and who is really behind it. Maybe then they will get the punishment fitting the crime for this vile, cowardly act instead of a slap on the wrist. Thank you.