I’m not calling Jussie Smolett a liar.

But I am saying something doesn’t sound right.

No normal person, let alone a celebrity, would be caught walking alone in Chicago 2 AM for food when Uber Eats is a thing.

I want to believe him, we all do.

Jussie is our favorite brother on Empire but sometimes we forget to separate the character actors play on television and the flawed humans they are in real life.

I was with him when he said he was robbed. I clutched my pearls when he said they beat him up, poured bleach on him, and tied a noose around his neck.

I released my pearls and gave side eye when the blurry pictures were released of the perpetrator’s shadows. These were the guys that screamed “MAGA country” as they fled from the scene?

I understand how much courage it takes to be attacked and come forward to not only the police, but the public as well, so justice can be served.

But something is missing.

My brothers in the LBGTHGTVLMNOQ community are with me on this one. The streets are talking and the whispers say Jussie was looking for a little more than food at 2 AM; it sound like he was looking for trade.

In other words, this sounds like an online hookup that went awry.

I can understand the embarrassment. His reluctance to hand over his phone was the “ah ha” moment we all needed to know he was hiding something, but what?

We still love Jussie, Empire not so much. But bro, it’s hard enough for females and gay men to step forward who have actually been victimized. Don’t make the cause harder by playing on the sympathies of people who want to believe you. When it turns out there was more to the story than meets the eye, stories like Jussie’s make it harder to believe actual victims.

And that’s not cool.

If there is a lesson in this for any of us it’s this: There are two sides to every story and not every victim tells the truth. Also, don’t go meeting strangers from online dating apps at 2 AM in Chicago.

Money can’t buy common sense and once you put a story out there, you can’t take it back.

Jussie has money. Surely he can order food, and trade, safely and privately.

Lesson learned.

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