by Sheri Urban
The anti-Trump mainstream media and many top Democrats uncritically pushed a dubious — and since-discredited — account of a “MAGA”-backed homophobic and racist attack on “Empire” star Jussie Smollett.
Smollett contends he was targeted by two Trump supporters, who verbally and physically accosted him as he was walking home from a Subway sandwich shop in downtown Chicago on January 29. The actor says the men called him a “f*****” and a “n*****,” tied a noose around his neck, poured bleach on him, and kicked him in the ribs.
The suspicious “hate crime” account by Smollett, however, has just about fallen apart based on new evidence. Police sources have told reporters that Smollett hired two Nigerian men to stage the attack. The actor has also reportedly been resistant to full cooperation with authorities, such as waiting a full two weeks to turn over “limited and heavily redacted” phone records meant to corroborate his account.
Top Democrats, such as House Speaker Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), media darling Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY), and presidential hopefuls Sen. Cory Booker (D-NY) and Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA), swiftly posted uncritical tweets regarding Smollett’s suspicious account of the attack, in a clear effort to help push a beneficial partisan narrative, which is essentially: “President Trump and his deplorable supporters are unleashing hate on marginalized groups and must be stopped!”
Here are just some of the tweets from these top Democrats that have aged poorly, to put it mildly:
House Speaker Pelosi wrote: “The racist, homophobic attack on [Jussie Smollett] is an affront to our humanity. No one should be attacked for who they are or whom they love. I pray that Jussie has a speedy recovery & that justice is served. May we all commit to ending this hate once and for all.”
Pelosi has since deleted the tweet without explanation or follow-up. It’s unclear if Pelosi, for example, still wants justice to be served if Smollett really did orchestrate the attack.
Rep. Ocasio-Cortex (D-NY): “There is no such thing as ‘racially charged.’ This attack was not ‘possibly’ homophobic. It was a racist and homophobic attack. If you don’t like what is happening to our country, then work to change it. It is no one’s job to water down or sugar-coat the rise of hate crimes.”
Sen. Booker: “The vicious attack on actor Jussie Smollett was an attempted modern-day lynching. I’m glad he’s safe. To those in Congress who don’t feel the urgency to pass our Anti-Lynching bill designating lynching as a federal hate crime—I urge you to pay attention.”
Sen. Harris: “[Jussie Smollett] is one of the kindest, most gentle human beings I know. I’m praying for his quick recovery. This was an attempted modern day lynching. No one should have to fear for their life because of their sexuality or color of their skin. We must confront this hate.”
Rep. Maxine Waters (D-CA): “Jussie is my friend – a very talented & beautiful human being. It is so hurtful that homophobic haters would dare hurt someone so loving and giving. I’m dedicated to finding the culprits and bringing them to justice. Jussie did not deserve to be harmed by anyone!”
Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D-NY): “New York State calls this attack on Jussie Smollett what it is — a hate crime. Homophobia and racism will not be tolerated — not now, not ever.”
Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA), currently serving as House Intelligence Chairman, wrote: “I met [Jussie Smollett] at the Pride Parade in Los Angeles, and I’ve seen the passion and moral clarity of his activism first hand. This week he was the victim of an horrific attack. We pray for your speedy recovery, Jussie, and reject this act of hatred and bigotry.”
Gov. Gavin Newsom (D-CA): “This kind of violence should be unacceptable. We cannot continue to allow racism, homophobia, transphobia, anti-semitism, or any other form of hate continue to drive violence in our country.”
This kind of violence should be unacceptable. We cannot continue to allow racism, homophobia, transphobia, anti-semitism, or any other form of hate continue to drive violence in our country. https://t.co/ipstMGLHEI— Gavin Newsom (@GavinNewsom) January 30, 2019
Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee (D-TX): “Hate in any form is unacceptable – I was deeply troubled to hear of the attack on him and I am relieved that [Jussie Smollett] is safe and receiving medical attention and is not deterred from being the best actor and performer can be – #NoHate.”
Rep. Frederica Wilson (D-FL): “While relieved that [Jussie Smollett] has not suffered any permanent physical damage, I am deeply concerned by how free some people feel to attack others for who they are or who they love and the long-term damage it does to our society.”
Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-MI): “‘When one of the most famous black and gay men in America is not safe, the message is clearer than it has ever been.’ The dangerous lies spewing from the right wing is killing & hurting our people. Thinking of you [Jussie Smollett], and my LGBTQ neighbors.”
Chair of the Democratic National Committee Tom Perez: “Let’s call it what it is: A vicious hate crime. My heart goes out to Jussie’s family — all of us at the DNC are praying for his full recovery.”
Host Tim Young posted top Democrats’ hasty reactions to the alleged hate crime against Smollett, which has essentially fallen apart now, in one tweet: