Jussie Smollet's hoax tarnished Chicago and the CPD

Jussie Smollett Tarnished Chicago, The CPD, And All Hate Crime Victims

He took advantage of an already-divided city for his personal gain.

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On January 29, 2019, "Empire" actor Jussie Smollett claimed to be attacked by two men in Chicago who tied a rope around his neck, doused him in an unknown substance, and yelled racial and homophobic slurs. The attack was initially handled by the Chicago Police Department (CPD) as a hate crime and the department available resources to solve the case.

The media treatment of the assault due to Smollett's celebrity status catapulted it to the national level and brought undue criticism to Chicago and put the city's reputation in the spotlight.

In the immediate aftermath of the attack, Smollett was treated as accordingly: as the victim of a hate crime. CPD handled the case with the highest degree of professionalism and with the utmost integrity.

Yet, the way the media handled the case coupled with the initial outpouring of support from high-level activists and politicians activated issues dividing America today. The issues range from racism and homophobia to distrust in the media and politically motivated attacks. In our current political climate, this case ignited deep-seated tensions.

The most damaging part of this case though was the level to which it dragged Chicago and its police department's reputation through the mud.

On February 21, 2019, Superintendent of the CPD, Eddie Johnson held a press conference to deliver key facts about the case, how it was handled, and the effects it's had on the city.

First, he reiterated Smollett's treatment as a victim until the story began to unfold after the attackers were arrested. Second, he questioned why an African American individual would use the symbolism of a noose in a racially-motivated attack in this "publicity stunt." Essentially, Smollett "took advantage of the pain and anger of racism to promote his career." Johnson's main pain-point was the incomparable level of media attention given to this case compared to the media attention given to the numerous victims and families of murder violence in the city. Third, this was a huge waste of time for CPD, and although no other cases were impacted, it is still "resources and time [they] will never get back."

The only thing Smollett managed to accomplish was bringing Chicago national attention for the wrong reasons. The city's reputation was dragged and all because of a hoax.

The least he can do is issue an apology and pay restitution to the CPD who work tirelessly to solve real, impactful cases each and every day.

The CPD works every day to uphold their oath and serve the citizens of the wonderful city of Chicago by keeping them safe and solving all the cases they encounter. Yes, certain cases might be more complicated and not as cut-and-dry as the Jussie Smollett case, but this case in no way, shape or form, reflects positively on the CPD. It brought the city's policing reputation into the spotlight due to the enormous volume of unsolved cases. While some say the CPD rushed to solve this case, I think the political pressure and media attention put undue stress on the department to perform.

This case is not only damaging to the CPD's reputation, but to Chicago's reputation as a whole.

It exposed Chicago as the murder capital with an immense volume of unsolved cases and put the blame on CPD's policing. However, if every murder case received the same amount of consistent media attention as Smollett's did, then perhaps more could be done in terms of people coming forth with evidence and pressure being put on the attackers.

Smollett also caused unjust damage to future victims of hate crimes by staging his attack.

Future attacks will be treated with undue skepticism from the outset because of this case. We have enough doubt about the victims of rape and sexual abuse, and now we will have doubts about hate crime victims. Where does it stop? We can only hope the next victim is not treated unjustly and is given due process to make their claims and given a fair investigation.

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10 Reasons Why Tom Holland Is The Definition Of Total Boyfriend Material

He's the adorable British dork of our dreams.

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Tom Holland first stormed onto the scene as Spiderman in "Captain America: Civil War" in 2016, and we all loved his performance in the movie. However, now that time has gone on, there's another reason he's stolen all of our hearts: He's one hundred percent boyfriend material! He's absolutely adorable, is a complete dork without ever meaning to, and he loves all dogs. There are so many reasons Tom Holland is perfect boyfriend material, but here are ten of the most important reasons.

1. Let's start with the obvious: He's Spiderman.

https://www.instagram.com/p/Bve18NAH2tM/

What girl wouldn't want to date a superhero? Spiderman is one of the best superheroes ever so it would be amazing to date the actor who plays him. Also, if you didn't cry during Tom Holland's final performance in "Infinity War", you're lying.

2. He loves dogs.

https://www.instagram.com/p/BvfOZzyHKPB/

Not only does he have a cute pit bull named Tessa, but he also seems to make friends with every dog he meets. It would be so wonderful to play with dogs with him!

3. He's always down for adventures.

https://www.instagram.com/p/Bsj6FpInD8x/

One of the best parts of dating someone is getting to try new things and go on adventures with them. Since Tom travels the world all the time to promote his movies, you and he could maybe take time every now and then to try something new, like surfing!

4. He's that adorable British boyfriend you've always dreamt of.

https://weheartit.com/entry/292722044

Yes, celebrities like Tom Hiddleston and Benedict Cumberbatch have a more "suave Brit" personality about them, but Tom Holland is the "adorable Brit" every girl has ever dreamt of dating. He's pretty much cornered the market at this point.

5. He's just a really big dork.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=myIgq-mxYGo

I mean, just look at him! I don't think there would be anyone better to laugh or do dorky things with than Tom Holland.

6. He's got a great group of friends.

https://www.instagram.com/p/BxQF-5nFzgB/

I don't know about you, but I would love to hang out with Zendaya and Jacob Balaton. All three of these guys just seem like perfect squad goals.

7. He truly loves and appreciates the people in his life.

https://www.instagram.com/p/Bv1iSiyH0d5/

Tom always shows his gratitude for every opportunity he's been given and never hesitates to support his co-stars. That, to me, is true friendship.

8. He's got a great sense of style.

https://www.instagram.com/p/BxYLG9dlQX_/

That is one classy outfit right there. And the muscles are a great bonus.

9. He's well-traveled.

https://www.instagram.com/p/Bhk23hzF4gt/

How awesome would it be to see the world with Tom as he goes on promotional tours? Think of all the cool things you could experience together!

10. He's a pure ray of sunshine who deserves the world.

https://weheartit.com/entry/293981700

Breaking News: Local Boy is a Literal Angel. He is the Brightest Ray of Sunshine.

So ladies, if you're looking for the perfect boyfriend, look no further than Tom Holland.

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We Can't Just 'Cancel' Everything, There Have To Be Boundaries

Where do we draw the line?

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We've all seen the news over the past few days. We all know who James Charles & Tati Westbrook are and what they've done. I'm not going to sit here and attempt to a) re-tell this drama or b) persuade you to think one way or another, but rather to direct you towards the bigger picture.

Cancel culture.

To be 'canceled' is, essentially, "used like a massive, informal boycott when someone or something in the public eye offends ...or when we're just over them." For instance, after Olivia Jade and her family were caught up in the college admissions scandal? #Canceled. Comedian Louis C.K admitting to sexual harassment? #Canceled. Jussie Smollet faking a racially-charged attack? #Canceled. Ironically, both Roseanne Barr and her show Roseanne were #Canceled. Lol. You get the point?

But what exactly is the criteria for cancelation? Many other celebrities have hit rock bottom in the past and managed to climb their way back to the top unscathed, but why have these celebs reached the point of no return? Take Kanye for example: he openly supports President Trump, he's called slavery "a choice," he's been discriminatory towards the handicapped, he speaks irrationally and radically on Twitter, that whole Taylor Swift debacle — the list goes on. At the time, these events seemed pretty serious with Twitter users commenting, "He is not a free thinker. He is a free moron who doesn't read." and thousands of others unfollowing the celebrity on all social media platforms. However, "West hasn't entirely been canceled. He's still afforded a platform, power, a voice." Despite each knockdown, he's managed to scrape himself back off the ground and project his redeemable qualities of being family-oriented, humorous, and a decent musical artist.


The same goes for Jordyn Woods. People were so quick to "cancel" her after the cheating scandal with Tristan Thompson. The internet quite literally exploded days after the news broke with memes, nasty comments, and photos just dragging her entire existence. Shockingly, after an interview with Jada Pinkett Smith where she revealed her side of the story (playing the victim card), the world was suddenly empathetic?? In less than a week, the narrative was flipped and audiences were running to her defense saying, "It wasn't her fault" and "How brave of her to share her story." Now, Jordyn claims to be happier than ever, thriving within her modeling career and clothing line.


Again, I ask, what allows some people to bounce back from life-altering scandals while others have no chance to redeem themselves? Is it a legality thing? Does age, race, or gender play a part in it? As media gatekeepers, the fate of these celebrities is quite literally in our hands. We decide whose career/life gets ruined, whose issues are worth overlooking, who deserves to be publicly shamed, etc. We must remember that these celebrities are people, too. They have families, feelings, children, personal lives that don't involve the outside world. Rather than "canceling" someone, why don't we re-direct them towards the truth or encourage that they seek help? We can still continue the conversation and acknowledge that what these individuals have done is wrong without spewing negativity online. It's 2019 — let's do better and let's be better.

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