As the dust surrounding Jussie Smollett begins to settle, many have found solace in making jokes about the ordeal. Memes and gifs depicting the Empire actor as Pinocchio–the fictitious wooden doll who becomes a real boy whose nose grows with the lies he tells–have circulated the Internet.
Despite the LOLs that have come at the 36-year-old’s expense, comedian Faizon Love says its time the black community rally behind the disgraced actor and help him through his tough times. Taking to social media Saturday, (Feb. 23) the 50-year-old boldly declared that Smollett may have messed up but he’s still part of the community.
“Tell you the truth, he’s our f–k up, and what I mean by that you can claim LGB barbecue, whatever that thing is called, you a part of the black community first, Jussie, ” Love said while smoking a cigar. “
On January 29, Smollett alleged to have been attacked after leaving a Subway fast food restaurant by two MAGA wearing men. According to Smollett, the men shouted racial and homophobic slurs, threw bleach on him and attempted to tie a noose around his neck.
Following initial reports of the attack, celebrities, political figures, and entertainers took to social media demonstrating support for the openly gay actor. However, as the story unfolded, doubt began to cloud the allegations when the Chicago PD located the alleged attackers. The two men turned out to be brothers and claimed they were paid by the actor to stage the incident and instructed on which racial epithets to use. Footage later revealed them purchasing a rope and MAGA hat.
Smollett turned himself into police Thursday (Feb. 21) and faces a felony charge. Under Illinois law, Smollett may serve one to three years in prison for filing a false police report.
The Friday actor said despite his egregious mistake the support of the black community is needed.
And when you part of the black community, it’s like a marriage: good, bad the ugly we still got you. So let that be a lesson to you. The black community, he’s our f–k up. We must embrace him, let him get through these lumps and move the f–k on.”