Find out what the 74-year-old had to say about the Academy Awards debacle, which erupted after Chris Rock’s comedic joke enraged Best Actor winner Will Smith.
Smith’s assault on the stand-up comedian, according to Abdul-Jabbar, “was also a blow to men, women, the entertainment industry, and the Black community.”
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Is Disappointed
Moving on, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar was a professional basketball player who is known as the NBA’s all-time leading scorer. He is now an award-winning columnist who writes his own articles on Substack.
The author recently published his thoughts on Will Smith’s altercation with American comedian Chris Rock after his jokingly insulting Jada Pinkett Smith comment was not well received by her husband.
Abdul-post, Jabbar’s titled “Will Smith Did a Bad, Bad Thing,” stated that the actor “did a lot more damage than just to Rock’s face,” as he explained:
“With a single petulant blow, he advocated violence, demeaned women, derided the entertainment industry, and perpetuated stereotypes about the Black community.”
Will Smith, according to the writer, “announced that his wife was incapable of defending herself – against words” by hitting Rock.
Later, Abdul-Jabbar suggests that “the Black community also takes a direct hit from Smith” because he allegedly acted violently and with less control over his emotions, which is similar to how Black people are portrayed in systemic racism. In terms of the harm done to the entertainment industry, the columnist quotes:
“Smith’s violence is an implicit threat to all comedians, who must now fear that an edgy or insulting joke will be met with violence.”
A Twitter user named @RajaSen tweeted their thoughts on the piece, referencing the tweet’s quote and saying it broke their heart.
The Writer Doesn’t Want To Charge The actor.
Later in the piece, Abdul-Jabbar included a photograph of himself and Will Smith, explaining that they met 28 years ago when the basketball star appeared on Fresh Prince of Bel-Air.
The writer praised the Academy Award winner for Best Actor and described himself as a big fan of his films, but admitted that “it will be difficult to watch the next movie without remembering this sad performance.”
The romance of Jada Pinkett Smith and August Alsina has been dragged into Will Smith’s Oscar saga.
Episode 6 of THE FRESH PRINCE OF BEL-AIR is titled “Will’s Misery.” Photographed are: (l-r) Kareem Abdul-Jabbar as himself, Will Smith as William ‘Will’ Smith — Photographer: Paul Drinkwater/NBCUniversal Photo Bank
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar stated that while he does not want Smith to be punished or ostracized as a result of his error, he does want it to serve as a warning to others not to romanticize or glorify bad behavior. Will Smith should also “be the man who truly protects others – by admitting the harm he’s done to others,” he says.
Will Smith Apologized
Moving on, Will Smith apologized on social media after slapping Rock, which stunned the audience at the Dolby Theatre as well as the rest of the world.
On Instagram, @willsmith posted a typed statement in which he acknowledged the destructiveness of violence and called his behavior at the Academy Awards “unacceptable and inexcusable.”
The actor apologized publicly to Chris Rock, the Academy, the show’s producers, the audience and viewers, as well as the Williams Family and his King Richard Family.
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar acknowledged in an updated version of the article that Will Smith has since apologized to Chris Rock, the Academy, and the audience.