Do not allow Jussie Smollett’s alleged hoax distract you from the very real hate that exists out there

Welp, he was arrested. Jussie Smollett turned himself in to the Chicago police this morning and was charged with felony criminal charges for disorderly conduct/filing a false police report. His lawyers are vowing an “aggressive defense.” The Chicago police held a press conference this morning where the police superintendent — clearly furious — claimed that Smollett staged the attack and sent the threatening letter to himself because he was upset with his salary.

Empire is considering what to do with his character and are reportedly considering suspending him from the series, although Fox declined to comment. The network has since released a statement that read: “We understand the seriousness of this matter and we respect the legal process. We are evaluating the situation and we are considering our options.” Meanwhile, an upcoming episode of Drop the Mic featuring Smollett has been pulled from the schedule.

Gabourey Sidibe continues to support her co-star. And, of course, Donald Trump has weighed in, which I guess is only fair. Smollett created this flare-up in our on-going cultural war and dragged Trump supporters into it, there was no chance Trump was going to let it go unremarked upon:

My dear friend and sometime contributor to FoolishWatcher, Bobby, who is gay and therefore can speak for the community better than I can, wrote eloquently on this sad set of circumstances:

I do not feel any regret for supporting Jussie until proven otherwise. You cannot make me feel shame for having compassion. You cannot fault me for following the lead of the Chicago PD while they also repeatedly refuted claims it was a hoax and treated Jussie as a victim. (Funny how everyone is so pro-law enforcement unless they are running counter to your preferred narrative/investigating your politicians.)

I am angry that someone who should’ve known better could do something so grotesque. We all are. If it turns out this was hoax, I believe what he did was indefensible, and he should have consequences for falsifying a police report and causing immeasurable harm to the LGBTQ community. However, there is such a rush to use this bizarre and terrible story to somehow discredit LGBTQ communities and allies or suggest widespread hypocrisy and conspiracy. The thing is, in light of the truth behind Jussie’s story being revealed, the condemnation will be swift, and I would go as far to call it universal.

Can the same be said for Alex Jones’ unfounded, disgusting crusade to discredit the victims of Sandy Hook? What about the conspiracy about how Hillary Clinton ran a child sex ring out of a pizza shop basement that led to a man firing a rifle in the restaurant? Or how about the woman that accused an Obama supporter of carving a B on her face? Moreover, what about our current President’s obsession with the validity of Obama’s citizenship?

If folks are so concerned with the MAGA brand being unfairly associated with anti-LGBTQ sentiment, perhaps more energy should be directed at the official party platform which opposes marriage equality, affirms conversion therapy, supports adoption agencies rejecting same-sex parents, etc. That’s not rumor nor innuendo; that’s official party platform you can read on the official GOP website.

Please read his entire piece and reserve some empathy for the very real victims of hate crimes whose names you’ll never know.

Meanwhile, President Firestarter has been positively mum about the Maryland Coast Guard lieutenant and white nationalist who has been arrested on federal charges of illegally possessing weapons and drugs. According to court documents, he had a spreadsheet of targets that included Democratic leaders: Elizabeth Warren, Cory Booker, Kamala Harris, Kristin Gillibrand, Beto O’Rourke, Nancy Pelosi, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Richard Blumenthal, Sheila Jackson Lee, Maxine Waters, Ilhan Omar, and Chuck Schumer; journalists: Joe Scarborough, Chris Hayes, Van Jones, Don Lemon, Ari Melber and Chris Cuomo; activist Angela Davis and the Democratic Socialist of America. The man had written that he was “dreaming of a way to kill almost every last person on the earth” and had “searched the Internet using phrases such as ‘best place in dc to see congress people’ and ‘are supreme court justices protected.’” He reportedly had been inspired by the right-wing Norweigan extremist who killed 77 people in 2011 and wrote a manifesto targeting feminism, globalism and cultural Marxism.

Just a few of the President of the United States’ tweets from the past week. No reason.

Let’s move on to some less upsetting things, yes?

Just a programming note: if this thing really happens, if the Mueller report finally lands next week, everything on this site is going to be late — alright, even MORE late — because Momma is going to be distracted as hell.

For some reason, Extra has hired Sean Spicer as a special correspondent. Y’ALL. NO.

Here, Tucker Carlson is reduced to a sputtering, cursing boob by historian Rutger Bregman over the issue of taxes and money in politics. For some mysterious reason, Carlson chose not to air the interview. It is glorious:

In other Fox News nonsense, they’re trying to scare your grandma into thinking that Cory Booker is coming for her hamburgers.

It’s still SO LONG until Game of Thrones returns so in the meantime we’re just going to have to gobble up every little tiny trivial bit we can get like how Sansa is going to have her own armor this season.

Amazon is imprisoning its Lord of the Rings writers.

Maybe binge a little One Day at a Time this weekend?

The movie theater chain owners who are SO MAD at Roma and Netflix aren’t going to like this news.

Eminem is SO MAD Netflix canceled The Punisher

Netflix might be the salvation for a series that has been canceled on network or cable, but if you’re a Netflix original and you’ve been canceled, it appears to be the True Death.

Whoopi Goldberg is not your Oscars host. Really.

But Norah O’Donnell might be your new CBS Evening News host soon enough.

The Lonely Island is going on tour, but they are not coming to Houston or anywhere in Texas for that matter.

Danielle Staub’s 5-minute marriage is officially over.

Renewals

  • The Haunting of Hill House has been renewed for a second season at Netflix, THANK THE LORDT. It is to be called The Haunting of Bly Manor.

In Development

Casting News

Mark Your Calendars

  • The Twilight Zone debuts on CBS All Access on April 1 and this trailer legit gave me chills:
  • The Highwaymen will premiere on Netflix on March 29 (and in some theaters on March 15).
  • The Case Against Adnan Syed will debut on HBO on March 10.
  • 9-1-1 returns on Fox on March 18.
  • On My Block returns on Netflix in March:

R.I.P.

Peter Tork, Monkees guitarist

Vinny Vella, Actor

WATCH THIS

Legacies: Hey, there’s a talent show! 8 p.m., The CW

Flack: Anna Paquin stars as a cut-throat publicist in this new dramedy. Series premiere. 9 p.m., Pop

Desus & Mero: Desus Nice and The Kid Mero move their late night talk show from Viceland to Showtime, with their first guest: Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. Series premiere. (Sort of.)  10 p.m., Showtime

The Orville: “Part one of an all-new, special two-part episode.” Those words would have sparked such dread in me a year ago. 8 p.m., Fox 

Late Night:

  • Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon: Ken Jeong, Kate Upton, Anderson .Paak
  • Late Night with Seth Meyers: James Spader, Glenda Jackson, Brad Leone, Jeff Friedl
  • The Late Show with Stephen Colbert: Annette Bening, Ana Navarro, Ben Platt
  • The Late Late Show with James Corden: Kal Penn, Chris O’Dowd
  • The Daily Show: Mark Duplass
  • Busy Tonight: Sonequa Martin-Green, James Vincent McMorrow
  • Watch What Happens Live: Reba McEntire, Morris Chestnut

THUR 7:00 7:30 8:00 8:30 9:00 9:30
ABC Grey’s Anatomy
(new)
A Million Little Things
(new)
How to Get Away with Murder
(new)
CBS The Big Bang Theory
(new)
Young Sheldon
(new)
Mom
(new)
FAM
(new)
S.W.A.T.
(new)
CW Charmed
(repeat)
Legacies
(new)
News/Local
FOX Gotham
(new)
The Orville
(new)
News/Local
NBC The Titan Games
(new)
Brooklyn Nine-Nine
(new)
Will & Grace
(new)
Law & Order: SVU
(new)
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