Students Angered by Jussie Smollett’s Contrived Story

Feeling deceived and disappointed, students at Marist College are angry and hurt after facts continue to surface about Jussie Smollett’s fabricated story as a victim of a hate crime.

“I think he’s a dick,” Samara Cohen ‘21 said. “He got so much attention and so many people and celebrities put out uplifting messages to support him, but it was all a lie.”

“He got a beautiful outpour of support and I just can’t believe he did it,” Madeline Dintino ‘20 said. Infuriated by Smollett’s false accusations, Dintino is concerned about the individuals affected by his actions. Many victims of violent attacks and sexual assault are already apprehensive to come forward, worrying about being believed. Smollett’s fabricated claims are detrimental to the community of silenced victims. “He goes on the record lying, making people more scared to come forward,” said Dintino.

The Black and openly gay actor on the show Empire, reported he was attacked on the night of Jan. 29, around 2 a.m. in Chicago. As Smollett was walking back to his apartment from a Subway sandwich shop, he claimed two men yelled racial and homophobic slurs, proclaiming, “This is MAGA country.” Smollett said the two men hit him and wrapped a noose around his neck.

As the Chicago police started to investigate the incident and interrogate suspects, they became skeptical of Smollet’s claims. By Feb. 16, the Chicago police were investigating if Smollett had paid two brothers to stage the attack. On Feb. 20, Smollett was charged with disorderly conduct for allegedly filing a false police report regarding the assault.

“He’s trash,” Sierra Robinson ‘20 said, enraged by Smollett’s despicable actions. “He’s selfish. He’s basically taking his status as a Black, gay man and abusing it.”  

Sharing strong disapproval of Smollett’s poor decisions, Rosellyn Hill ‘21 said, “I’m just really disappointed because I don’t think he understands his influence.” Hill continued, “After years of never seeing a person of color, who is queer on the screen, he blows it.” The Empire actor hurt both the LGBTQ community as well as the Black Lives Matter movement. “He is setting the movement back years; not just the LGBTQ community, but also the Black Lives Matter movement,” Hill said.

Regarding Smollett’s motives, Hill claimed, “Maybe his thoughts were any press is good press, but there are still teens and children who have to live with the everyday struggle of being gay. They don’t have the privilege of deciding whether good press is good or not.” Upset by Smollett’s actions, Hill went on to say, “He is setting up the community to fail.”

Whitman Davis ‘21 believes Smollett’s actions were driven by his desire for more fame. He said, “It’s kind of ridiculous that he leveraged a very real and serious crime.” Smollett carelessly threw way any concerns about the individuals he would affect.

Robinson is furious Smollett would capitalize on the struggle of minorities for fame and profit. She said, “I know he has experienced strife in his life as a minority, and then he does this?” Robinson finds the scandal completely horrific.

Similarly, Connor Strohson ‘21 is left with no respect for Smollett. “That guy is a moron. Just an idiot,” he said.

Students are infuriated by Smollett’s constructed story to make himself appear as a victim of a hate crime. Smollett’s actions have impacted many individuals, including those on the Marist College campus. Hill said, “I think as a community and as a whole, queer people of color deserve better than Jussie Smollett.”

Grace MaedaComment