Hours after Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel held a presser with Chicago cops to blast prosecutors’ dismissal of criminal charges against Empire actor Jussie Smollett, Emanuel appeared on Wolf Blitzer’s CNN program. He hadn’t calmed down any, and refused to say Smollett’s name.
“Here is my basic anger. There is no sense from this person who now, the state’s attorney said, committed the crime, or actually the hoax,” Emanuel fumed.
“But he’s walking around like he’s exonerated, with no sense of remorse or contrition…He gets off with two days of community service.”
“You and I are both Jewish,” Emanuel said for viewers’ sake, asking rhetorically if the CNN host thought either of them would get off with two days of community service at the ADL “if, on your front door there was a swastika, or mine, and they found out weeks later, after all the empathy, you or I had put that swastika on our door?”
The actor’s behavior is an “abomination,” Emanuel proclaimed.
“He used those [anti-hate crime] laws and those sentiments that bind us together as a society, to promote his own career, and then he’s walking around as if he’s done nothing wrong.”
Asked why the prosecutor’s office decided to broker the deal announced Tuesday morning, Chicago’s mayor shot back that he could not speak for that department.
“I can speak for the people of Chicago: This actor used the city, came here from New York to act.” Among his acts, Emanuel said, he acted like a crime had been committed. Chicago police worked diligently to undercover the hate crime and instead “found out it’s a hoax.”
“He went out and spoke on ABC to the country, as an African American and a gay man, about being the victim of a crime… It was all a hoax and a moral violation.”
“He used the hate crime laws to advance his own career and he got caught,” the mayor continued.
“This is what is upsetting people in the city and around the country. He has one law, or standard of accountability, and everybody else gets another. That’s wrong.”