Earlier this week, Jussie Smollett, best known for his portrayal of R&B singer Jamal Lyon on the Fox television series Empire, exited a Subway (the restaurant) in Chicago and was attacked by two men in ski masks. As the men attacked Smollett, who is black and openly gay, they hurled racial and anti-gay slurs at him and told him “This is MAGA country.” Smollett suffered a broken rib but was discharged from Chicago’s Northwestern Hospital Tuesday morning. Chicago police are investigating the attack.
Before his arrival in Chicago, Smollett had received threats, which for him is probably pretty common sadly, but many far-right extremists are claiming the Jussie Smollett attack is a left-wing hoax and a “false flag” and insist that Smollett is lying.
Because of course they are.
One of the would-be detectives on right-wing cesspool The Donald posted that Smollett “got mugged and is trying to turn himself into a race martyr.” Another described the attack as “another phony hate crime.” It’s not clear whether they think that the attack or hate crimes in general are “phony”.
In fact, many right-wing commentators and outlets been pushing the “fake news” narrative as well. Generally they’ve been following a, “That two Trump supporters were just waiting with rope and bleach at 2 a.m. for some celebrity to attack makes no sense” line of thinking.
Even right-wing Republicans who are expressed sympathy for Smollett were not safe from outraged Trump enthusiast and conspiracy buffs who believe that the attack on him is a hoax. Anti-Trump conservative Ana Navarro posted on Twitter, “I saw Jussie Smollett in Miami last week. I can’t believe this happened. It is sad and disgusting and deplorable.”
That didn’t sit well with Trump supporters who furiously attacked Navarro in the comments. One angry Trumper replied, “You disgusting hateful bitch….. U r the epitome of fake news and of a FAKE REPUBLICAN! Can not WAIT til God knee jerks you down ten notches @ananavarro!”
Gosh, who could possibly think that Trump supporters, who get this bent out of shape over tweets, would target and attack someone? Especially given their Dear Leader’s propensity for publicly attacking people who criticize him.
When a long list of prominent Democrats and CNN became the targets of a domestic terrorist in 2018, many on the far-right were quick to claim it was all a left-wing hoax as well. And now, many on the far right are assuming that the violent attack on Jussie Smollett is yet another left-wing plot to discredit Donald Trump’s presidency.
This presumes that Donald Trump’s presidency has any credibility to begin with.