The Slap Heard Around The World

Dylan Sargent, Writer

After a scandalous joke directed towards Jada Pinkett Smith at the Oscars, the world was shocked to see Will Smith get on stage and slap Chris Rock. This had everyone on the edge of their seats – nothing like this has ever happened on live television before.

Cracking jokes like the comedian he is, Rock mentioned Jada’s recently shaved head. She had just come out and said that she had alopecia, a disease which makes hair fall out. Watching from home, it seemed to be that Will Smith did find this a bit humorous, while Jada did not.

Suddenly, Will gets up out of his seat, goes on stage, and hits Chris Rock. Rock spoke for all of us at home when all he could say was, “Wow.” There’s nothing fresh about this prince.

At first, the controversy was simple: publicity stunt, or just a really stupid thing that happened on live television. If this was really all just one big sham to get more viewers, why would Smith ever say yes to something like this, knowing how badly it would make him look?

The controversy turned into much more as more people began to talk about it. Rock could simply press charges, and Smith’s career would snowball towards the downfall. The comedian decided not to press charges.

Smith went on to win an Oscar for his performance in King Richard just ten minutes after the incident. After a long and emotional speech, he declared his apologies. Without directly mentioning Rock, he says, “I want to apologize to the Academy and I want to apologize to my fellow nominees.”

After the show, the Academy even came out with a tweet regarding the situation – “The Academy does not condone violence of any form. Tonight we are delighted to celebrate our 94th Academy Awards winners, who deserve this moment of recognition from their peers and movie lovers around the world.”

On April 1, it was announced that Will Smith would resign from the Academy. By resigning, he will no longer be able to vote in future Oscar nominations. Although, his work will still be considered for future nominations. Many are outraged and think he deserves much more of a punishment, rather than a slap on the wrist.

He claims that he will accept any disciplinary actions needed to be taken from the Academy. He says that, “I betrayed the trust of the Academy. I deprived other nominees and winners of their opportunity to celebrate and be celebrated for their extraordinary work.”

Because he had violated the Academy’s “code of conduct” if you will, there will be a meeting held by the board on April 18 to discuss further actions.

For now, all of us viewers just have to wait at home and talk about it with friends. All I’m concerned about is the level of security in this place. Seriously, how did no one stop this guy?

Will Smith’s life has certainly gotten flipped and turned upside down. The LAPD has started an investigation, but there have been no updates made so far. The people now wait for the next step in the chain of events that caused the slap heard around the world.