By Joseph Wulfsohn
Published February 23, 2019
“Real Time” host Bill Maher offered his take on the controversy surrounding “Empire” actor Jussie Smollett.
Maher began by telling the panel that Smollett “wanted to be the victim” and what it says about America is that “there’s nothing more powerful than being a victim,” which he thought was a big problem.
“I feel like we’ve gone from this place where I hear people say, ‘Victims should be believed.’ Victims should be taken seriously. Victims should not always be believed,” Maher said. “Take you seriously - that’s a big difference, but we seem to have skipped that step because we always do.”
The HBO star later mocked Smollett, saying he’s “not a good actor” judging from his interview on “Good Morning America.”
Former DNC chairwoman Donna Brazile blasted the TV star for allegedly fabricating a hate crime in order to increase his salary.
“No one wants to be the victim of hate crimes. No one wants to be the victim of being attacked and brutalized because you’re gay or you’re black or you’re Jewish. That’s bulls**t,” Brazile exclaimed. “He wanted a pay raise and he wanted to bring attention to himself. I’m angry with him, I’m upset with him, and he owes not only the city of Chicago an apology- there are real-live victims out there today and I refuse to shut up because he played a terrible game and it’s painful.”
Ex-GOP strategist Rick Wilson insisted that the “system” worked since Smollett had a chance to be heard despite the fact that he was “full of crap.”
Smollett was charged with a felony for filing a false police report after he claimed late last month he was attacked by two men who used racial and homophobic slurs. It was also announced that he was being cut from the final two episodes of the current season of “Empire.”