Will Smith’s Assault of Chris Rock at Oscars was Outrageous and His Apologists Are Wrong

Screenshot via The Oscars

Opinion – I’m a fan of Will Smith. I’ve enjoyed his acting since his early days as the ‘’Fresh Prince of Bel-Aire.’ He is generally a cool, even-keeled dude. But what he did at the Oscars, no matter how he felt, or how ignorant and insensitive the provocation, is simply outrageous and unacceptable.

It’s criminal assault. On national TV. At the Oscars. Over a bad joke.

Let me repeat that.

It’s criminal assault. On national TV. At the Oscars. Over a bad joke.

And while some dismiss it as a stupid Hollywood thing, that nobody cares about, it matters because much of the country has now seen it, and the entire country is talking about it.

Yes, Chris Rock joked about Smith’s wife, fellow actor Jada Pinkett Smith over her shaved head, reportedly unaware that she suffered from alopecia which causes hair loss. And yes, Rock mocked the Smiths at prior Oscars.

Rock appears to have a thing for the Smiths’, and his comments could be seen as mean spirited and stupid. And I understand Smith being mildly offended. As a traditional, conservative ‘toxic’ male, I can also appreciate Smith’s desire to protect his wife and mother of his children.

But strutting up onstage at a nationally televised awards event and violently striking the comedian across the face is beyond the pale. It is criminal assault. Over a bad joke. On national TV. At the Oscars.

But worse is that Smith, after cussing at the stricken Rock from his seat, after the assault, telling him to keep his wife’s name out of his “f*cking mouth,” simply stayed and enjoyed the show. With literally nothing more than being tearful and getting “pulled aside and comforted” by his Hollywood chums Denzel Washington and Tyler Perry during a commercial break.

‘Comforted’ a tearful Smith? Who was comforting Rock?

Not only that, but he later went up and received his long-awaited Oscar for best actor for ‘King Richard,’ and while emotionally apologizing to the organizers and fellow nominees, and rambling on about family and love, and admitting looking “like the crazy father,’ in King Richard, Smith didn’t apologize to Rock whom he assaulted.

And most sickening, he got a standing ovation by much of the mob in the audience, even if some refused to even clap.

Smith also said: “I’m hoping the Academy invites me back.”

And whether they do should be a serious question.

Smith was later seen partying it up after the Oscars as if nothing had happened.

Smith did apologize to Rock the next day on Instagram, saying: his behavior “unacceptable and inexcusable.”

Meanwhile some disturbed individuals are defending Smith. Comedian Tiffany Haddish called Smith’s actions “beautiful” and praised him for standing up for Jada.

Other looney tunes on Twitter and other social media immediately turned a violent assault by a privileged black man against another black man into a black women or transgender issue.

One gentleman tweeted:

Those defending Will Smith (as you should) please keep that same energy for the countless Black women, transgender people, and others who are often harassed and humiliated in the name of “jokes.” #Oscars

And rapper 50 Cent made light of the situation by posting an image of Smith’s tearful acceptance speech and tweeting, “You have to win Oscars to do this kinda s—. after i win i’m gonna slap the s— out of a few people. LOL”

But the real victim, and the real gentlemen here is Rock, who tried to take the assault in stride, and tried to go on with his job, after HE apologized to Smith. Rock also declined to file a police report over the assault.

Others are less forgiving. And some hope the Academy will take some sort of punitive action against Smith, including taking away his Oscar.

As the U.S. Sun reports:

Fans called for the Fresh Prince star to hand back his prize after his outburst violated The Oscars’ Code of Conduct written in the wake of the MeToo Movement, which emphasized in 2017 the importance of “upholding the Academy’s values,” and “respect for human dignity.”

Taking to Twitter, one reacted: “Just imagine if that had been ANYONE but Will Smith.

“They would have been hauled off so fast. But we are not normalizing assault in 2022. No special treatment. Remove him #oscars”

A Hollywood source also told the NY Post that Smith could be stripped of his gong.

They said: “It’s basically assault.

YEAH. NO KIDDING. It’s criminal assault. On national TV. At the Oscars. Over a bad joke. ADN

Paul Crespo is the Managing Editor of American Defense News. A defense and national security expert, he served as a Marine Corps officer and as a military attaché with the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) at US embassies worldwide. Paul holds degrees from Georgetown, London, and Cambridge Universities. He is also CEO of SPECTRE Global Risk, a security advisory firm, and President of the Center for American Defense Studies, a national security think tank. - paulcrespo.substack.com - PAULCRESPO.COM


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