Rising

Progressive activist says Jussie Smollett case reflects the pace of the news cycle

Progressive strategist Navin Nayak told Hill.TV on Tuesday that the fallout over questions about actor Jussie Smollett's account of a reported assault reflects the pace of news gathering. 

"If this story looks where it's heading, obviously, it's incredibly disturbing," Nayak, senior vice president of the Center for American Progress, told hosts Krystal Ball and Buck Sexton on "Rising." 

"I do think it's also a reflection of the pace at which our media environment moves, that people feel like we don't have time necessarily to evaluate these facts," he continued. 

Smollett claimed earlier this month that two men attacked him in Chicago. He added that his attackers shouted "MAGA" and other pro-Trump slogans as well as homophobic and racial slurs. 

However, multiple law enforcement sources told CNN last week that Chicago police believed Smollett had actually paid two men to carry out the alleged early morning assault.

Smollett has denied that he played any part in the reported attack. 

The former editor-in-chief of Breitbart News London, Raheem Kassam, told Hill.TV that Smollett's account, if proven false, could negatively impact victims of hate crimes. 

"This will mean that real hate-oriented crimes are taken less seriously by people," Kassam said. "My concern is that when real incidents happen, people start asking if, well that guy, that famous actor faked a racially motivated attack, so maybe my black friend who says he was attacked faked his as well." 

- Julia Manchester