|Ufizzi Gallery, Florence|
Almost three years. Longer than COVID-19, and COVID-19 feels like forever. You’d think it should be done by now. But no. He’s baaaaack.
Given that a trial is going on, journalistic convention discourages me from endorsing either of the two possible narratives: A) That Smollett was the victim of this strange racist/homophobic attack committed by a pair of his employees, as the defense now suggests. Or B) Smollett himself paid his two associates $3,500 — by check, since we are not dealing with Lex Luthor here — to stage the attack in some kind of cracked effort to boost his profile and hence his salary.
I’m not publicly endorsing one or the other. Let’s just say I believe the one that doesn’t require a suspension of common sense. While we’re waiting for the jury to choose, no one can fault us, the unwilling audience, if we pass the time by trying to extract a bit of benefit out of this waste by noting three of the general lessons illustrated here.
1) Don’t lie. Lying is a trap. Alas, the same sort of person who fabricates stuff also lacks the fortitude to admit it when caught. And so it continues.
We’ve seen this on a national scale as the election fraud lie of Donald Trump has become the bedrock belief of the Republican Party. Worse than merely a lie, it’s a flimsy lie. They obviously don’t really believe the election was stolen from them in some amorphous way they can’t explain, never mind prove. If they actually believed that, why vote at all?
Rather, it’s just the lie they use to grease the skids of their bad behavior to fool themselves, if nobody else. The way Smollett is ignoring the fact that at one point he did community service — not the usual route taken by victims of hate crime — before Cook County State’s Attorney Kim Foxx’s special alternate system of justice for TV stars came to light and the matter was taken out of her hands and given to a special prosecutor.
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