Basketball champion Charles Barkley, no friend of political correctness when it comes to race relations, said the Jussie Smollett hoax will have serious repercussions for years to come on American discourse, reports Fox News.
Speaking with Stephen Colbert on Wednesday, Barkley said that everyone will lose over Jussie Smollett allegedly faking his own hate crime and then being cleared of all charges without a day in court.
"I think that we all lose. I think my black friends, my gay black friends, I think they lose because there’s all repercussions when you’re a minority. There’s always a double standard. You have to understand that and accept that. For every black, gay person out there, we lost. And it’s unfortunate," Barkley said. "I don’t know that kid, I wish him nothing but the best ... but you always have to look at the bigger picture."
"We made the cops look really bad in this scenario and there's probably going to be some resentment," Barkley said. "And the bottom line is: Everybody lost in this scenario. It's not good."
To further make matters worse, the Jussie Smollett legal defense has continued to put forward the idea that the "Empire" actor consistently told the truth by putting forward absurd theories — such as that his attackers (two brothers of Nigerian descent) may have worn whiteface.
"You can put makeup on," Smollett's lawyer, Tina Glandian, said on NBC. "There is, interestingly enough, a video. You know, I think police had minimal investigation in this case, it took me only five minutes to Google. You know, I was looking up the brothers, and one of the videos that showed up actually was of the brothers in whiteface doing a joker monologue with white makeup on him. So, it’s not — it’s not implausible.”
When news first broke that Chicago police believed that Jussie Smollett faked the hate crime against himself this past February, Barkley issued no defense of the actor and publicly mocked him to the point of causing his TNT co-host Shaquille O'Neal to laugh beyond control. Transcript below provided by The Daily Wire's Hank Berrien:
Co-host Kenny Smith asks: Ernie, what’s the most ridiculous one over there that’s still living that you would say has no chance of happening?
Barkley answers from the host’s table: Two black guys beating a black guy up.
That triggers Shaq to start cracking up.
The camera shows a close-up of the wall; one note reads: “Chuck: 11/1. The Blazers will have a better record than the Pelicans.” Another reads, “11-29-18. Chuck: The Clippers will not make the playoffs.”
Smith: That’s uh … that’s not on here, man.
Johnson, trying to keep the segment on track: Uh, the Clippers, well, the Clippers will not make the playoffs, and uh —
Shaq, laughing: What kind of hat, Chuck?
Barkley: MAGAS. MAGA hat. MAGA’s hat.
Shaq: You saying, you saying we can’t write ‘em a check, Chuck? (He starts laughing hard again.)
Barkley: America. America, let me just tell you something.
Smith: What’s that?
Barkley: Do not commit crimes with checks — (Shaq loses it again) C’mon, man, If you're going to break the law, do not write a check. (Shaq is laughing so hard he’s throwing his head back)
Smith: Cause if you’re writing a check, then what?
Shaq, laughing hard: Cash up.
Barkley: Cash, man. I never used an ATM. Now, I heard you can only get $200 out of it.