Jussie Smollett Controversy
Come let us gather and have a round table meeting about Jussie Smollett. In case you have been living under a rock, let me catch up to speed, Jussie Smollett who plays Jamal Lyon on the hit show, Empire filed a report with the Chicago Police Department on January 29th. The report stated that he was attacked by two men in masks around 2:00 AM, while he was heading to Subway. They beat him, tied a noose around his neck, and then poured an unknown substance on him all while yelling racial and homophobic slurs.
The Chicago Police investigated this as a possible hate crime, being that Smollett is black and gay. A week before this event occurred, there was hate mail sent to Jussie that pictured a stick figure being shot by a gun and read, "You will die black f**." Sources state that Jussie declined having extra security, even though he was encouraged to.
Not Adding Up
There were a lot of holes in Smollett's story. Why are you walking to Subway at 2:00 AM alone, Sir? Do you not have the Uber Eats app? Did you forget that you just supposedly got death threats? Despite the gray areas in the Empire actor's story, you know the black community was enraged. Celebrities such as John Legend, Janet Jackson, and his Empire family took to social media to share their thoughts and send their love to him, during this troubling time. His fans also posted pictures and messages showing their support and wishing him a fast recovery.
The Chicago Police released a statement stating that they believe that Smollett paid 2 men to orchestrate this attack. They believe that he knows the suspects and when the pictures were released of the alleged "suspects", to everyone's surprise, they were 2 black males named Olabinjo ("Ola") Osundairo and Abimbola ("Abel") Osundairo. Ola and Abimbola are from Nigerian descent and Ola appeared on Empire season 2 as an extra. Ola and Abel denied any allegations of this crime stating, “We are not racist. We are not homophobic, and we are not anti-trump. We were born and raised in Chicago and are American citizens.”
On February 20th the Chicago Police filed official charges against Smollett on one count of felony disorderly conduct for filing a false police report. This came after the Osundairo brothers testified in front of a grand jury. Their lawyer, Gloria Schmidt, stated, “There was a point where this story needed to be told, and they manned up and they said, 'we’re going to correct this.'” Thursday morning, actor Jussie Smollett turned himself into the Chicago Police. If convicted of this crime he can face up to three years in prison. His bail was set to 100,000, which he has since posted.
There are allegations that Smollett staged the attack because he was "dissatisfied with his salary", even though it has been reported that he makes about $100,000 per episode. Now, of course, Smollett denied these allegations stating, “It feels like if I had said it was a Muslim or a Mexican or someone Black I feel like the doubters would have supported me a lot more."
There are so many questions. Why do this during black history month? You couldn't wait until March to do this? Why not just simply ask for a raise? Smollett's Lawyer stated that he is presumed innocent until found guilty in a court of law, but things are not looking good right him right now.