Let’s assume the Will Smith slap to Chris Rock wasn’t staged. Will Smith recently made an apology to Chris Rock. It appeared genuine.
When the slap first happened, and Will Smith started cussing and yelling from the front row for Chris Rock to “keep (his) wife’s name out your fucking mouuuth!” I thought his reaction was a bit extreme. I didn’t think Rock’s GI Jane joke warranted anger. Rock wasn’t joking on Jada Pinkett-Smith’s alopecia condition that caused her hair loss. I took it as Rock speaking of Jada’s short her style making her resemble the GI Jane character. Hell, I didn’t even know she had alopecia. This wasn’t common knowledge to a lot of people.
Most of what everyone else thought and said, I thought and said as well. “If I was Chris Rock and he slapped me, we would’ve been fighting.” And even psychoanalyzing Will Smith while attributing his violent behavior to the whole Jada Pinkett-Smith/August Alsina entanglement and publicly airing it out on her Red Table Talk show. Subsequently, Will Smith was ridiculed endlessly on social media. On social media, you couldn’t escape the Will Smith dejected face meme at the Red Table Talk show. The dejected face happened after Jada told him of his affair with their son’s friend.
People just continued to pounce on Will Smith, calling him a sucker, simp, and how he got played by his wife Jada. I speculated that he was fed up with all the ridiculing he faced by celebrities and spectating average joes on social media. I felt empathy and sympathy for him while also thinking he was wrong and Chris Rock should’ve slapped him back.
But that’s the culture of America. We love seeing humiliation rituals. We love seeing the rise and fall of public figures. Some of our collective misery is projected onto others’ shortcomings. And even if we don’t have misery in our lives, we just have a collective need to pass judgement on everything and everyone.
This whole cancel culture is a big mess as well. An influencer or public figure can say multiple things you agree with and say one thing you disagree with, and now you hate their guts.
The same thing with cancelling someone for their views also goes for their behavior as well. Someone can have a squeaky-clean record for thirty years and make one mistake and now you hate them for life. Now all of a sudden, they are a bad person. I say just put it in perspective and say Will Smith and other public figures are good people who just made or makes a bad decision from time to time. Or some are a mixture of being flawed, good, and complex human beings with regular failings just like you and I. But ultimately, celebrities put their pants on one leg at a time just like you.
That’s why you shouldn’t overly fawn over celebrities. But don’t get overly outraged by them either.
I hope Chris Rock and Will Smith patch things up and make amends. That is, assuming this whole Oscar’s slap fiasco wasn’t staged. Hmmm.