Leonard Pitts Jr.: Will Smith failed to do the manly thing at Oscars | Column

todayApril 1, 2022

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Leonard Pitts Jr.

Sorry, however there isn’t any excuse.

Not that that is stopped some individuals from looking for one. And sure, in case you hadn’t figured it out, we’re speaking in regards to the occasion that has crowded out Ukraine, the pandemic and gasoline costs as the highest subject of public dialog. That means, after all, The Slap.

And right here begins maybe essentially the most pointless recap you will ever learn:

Sunday evening in the course of the Academy Awards telecast, presenter Chris Rock made a crack about actress Jada Pinkett Smith, whose scalp is shorn practically bald. ” ‘GI Jane 2,’ cannot wait to see you,” he snarked, referencing a 1997 film whereby Demi Moore shaved her head to play a Navy SEAL. In response, Smith’s husband, Will, mounted the stage, reared all the best way again to West Philadelphia, and slapped Rock within the face. He returned to his seat bellowing, “Hold my spouse’s title out your f—–g mouth!”

The excuse-making started instantly after. As Smith later advised it whereas accepting the Oscar for finest actor, Denzel Washington recommended him as follows in the course of the business break: “At your highest second, watch out. That is when the satan comes for you.” Someplace, the satan is probably going consulting his lawyer a few defamation go well with. Pestilence, famine and Ted Cruz, sure, however Devil had nothing to do with this.

Persons are additionally studying…

One can also be unpersuaded by Tiffany Haddish and others who’ve lauded Smith as a defender of Black womanhood. He himself tried to say that mantle in an acceptance speech the place he likened himself to Richard Williams, father of tennis goddesses Venus and Serena, whom he portrayed within the movie, “King Richard.”

“I seem like the loopy father,” he stated. “However love will make you do loopy issues.”

Lastly, some have talked about alopecia, the auto-immune dysfunction that triggered Jada’s hair loss. It is from sure — and appears unlikely — that Rock knew about this, however the level is taken: One should not joke about individuals’s diseases. However one should not get smacked if one does.

Juwan Howard's slap flap fits a disturbing trend

So no, no excuse. Will Smith undressed himself on that stage, this preacher from the gospel of constructive pondering, can-do and — ahem — “will energy,” revealing the insecurities beneath his facade.

The file will present that when Rock made the offending crack, Smith really laughed. Then he noticed his spouse’s face go nonetheless and her eyes roll, and all of a sudden, he was on the spot. This was not about her misery, you perceive, however about his manhood in response thereto. The typical man would somewhat stroll bare by a lion’s cage than see a girl he loves in ache and be helpless to do one thing about it.

Sadly, “one thing” usually decodes as hitting. We males are good at hitting issues. It makes us really feel manly. That is why, from the Kremlin to Mar-a-Lago to the Academy Awards, few issues are extra unpredictable — or harmful — than a person who feels pressed to vindicate his manhood. The weaker the person, the higher the necessity and the vaster the collateral injury.

Will Smith’s collateral injury features a tarnished evening, a banged-up fame and possibly a broken profession. However Rock declined to press fees, so a minimum of he did not finish the evening in handcuffs as he simply may have. A day later, he lastly apologized to Rock for his epic jackassery.

Perhaps subsequent time Smith sees his spouse in misery, his first thought shall be to consolation her.

That, in any case, can be the manly factor to do.

Pitts Jr. writes for the Miami Herald:

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Written by: soft fm radio staff

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