Comedian and TV host Trevor Noah has given his take on the Jussie Smollett story, saying one positive is that people now hate the Empire star for being “an asshole,” rather than because he is black and gay.
Noah, host of The Daily Show, said on his programme on Thursday night (February 21) that “the whole world knows Jussie’s name, and, it’s for all the wrong reasons.”
It comes after police revealed they believe Smollett staged being the victim of an alleged homophobic and racist assault in Chicago on January 29.
He is facing charges of filing a false police report and disorderly conduct, punishable with up to three years in prison.
Trevor Noah takes aim at Jussie Smollett
Eddie T. Johnson, superintendent of Chicago Police Department, said he believed that Smollet’s alleged attack was part of a “publicity stunt” staged by the actor because he was “dissatisfied” with his salary on Empire.
“Are you kidding me? This dude may have faked a hate crime, just to get a raise,” said Noah.
“I don’t understand. What’s the logic there? You get your ass beat, and then you go to your boss and be like: ‘Hey, can I get another million dollars? I need to buy some band aids.'”
“This is just such a petty reason to pull off such a major crime.”
“Think about it, members of the gay community are emotionally terrorised over something that turned out to be a hoax.”
The South African comedian then took aim at the way Smollett allegedly staged the assault, who police believe wrote a cheque to two Nigerian brothers to carry out the staged attack.
“Even amateurs know if you commit a crime, you go all cash people, no paper trail,” said Noah.
Trevor Noah: People hate Smollett as “he’s an asshole,” not because he is black and gay
The 35-year-old TV host, however, insisted that one good thing that has come from the Smollett debacle is that people now judge him on his character, referring to Martin Luther King’s “I Have A Dream” speech in 1963.
“In his wake, he has screwed over everyone,” continued Noah.
The Jussie Smollett saga began as a story of people who hated him because he was black and gay. Now, people just hate him because he’s an asshole. pic.twitter.com/ItpeasAS6D
— The Daily Show (@TheDailyShow) February 22, 2019
“Think about it, members of the gay community are emotionally terrorised over something that turned out to be a hoax.
“Trump supporters are upset about being falsely accused.”
He added: “The point is, nobody won.
“But there is a silver-lining, when this started out, it was a story about people who hated Jussie Smollett because he was black and gay.
“But now, people hate him because he’s an asshole. In other words, they are judging him on the content of his character and not the colour of his skin.
“And that, my friends, is progress.”