Rather than retract a story that increasingly appears to be false, GQ editors opted to add a few “updates,” while leaving the body of the article virtually unchanged.
GQ published “The Racist, Homophobic Attack on Jussie Smollett Is Far-Right America’s Endgame,” on Jan. 29, the day “Empire” star Jussie Smollett was alleged attacked. He was officially arrested Thursday for orchestrating the entire hate crime. (RELATED: Jussie Smollett Arrested After Alleged ‘MAGA’ Hoax)
Despite new facts emerging that seemingly indicate that the hate crime was fabricated, the headline remained the same as of Thursday night. Amended to the article, however, are two clarifying “updates”:
“Update 1 (2/20): This story is fast-moving and we’re keeping an eye on the news as it develops. When this piece was originally written, we were operating with the then-set of facts as documented by official police reports,” it reads.
The update, which is from Wednesday, was the same day Smollett was labeled a suspect in the hoax and subsequently charged. While it’s unclear when on Wednesday the article was updated, saying the story was written with the facts they had at the time, does not actually provide the reader with any new information.
The second update, from Thursday, reads, “Update 2 (2/21): Jussie Smollett was arrested this morning on charges of falsifying a police report.”
Though this new update essentially renders the story null and void, the body of the article remains relatively unchanged. It goes as far as to criticize people who called the attack “racially charged,” because it doesn’t go far enough.
The cautious wording is one last wound inflicted on Smollett’s battered body, a careful hedging of bets that don’t need hedging—a crime scene involving a corpse is not discussed as a “possible death.” But the stodgy apparatus of law enforcement isn’t particularly interested in acknowledging social ills—and neither is the news media when it goose-steps around the truth of the matter with shallow euphemisms like “racially charged” used to describe open, proud bigotry.
Joshua Rivera, the reporter who wrote the story, did not respond to The Daily Caller’s request for comment.