Jussie Smollett made his first public appearance at a Los Angeles club Saturday night, just days after the Empire actor was the victim in an attack that is being investigated as a possible hate crime.
“I had to be here tonight, y’all. I couldn’t let those motherfuckers win,” Smollett told the crowd at West Hollywood’s Troubadour. “So I will always stand for love. I will never stand for anything other than that.
Regardless of what anyone else says, I will only stand for love.”
Smollett continued, “I’m okay… I’m not fully healed yet but I’m going to, and I’m going to stand strong with y’all.”
He also added “Be as black, be as brown, be as gay as the fuck you want to be. Now is the time: Be blacker, be gayer, do it right the fuck now.”
Chicago suntimes reports, Smollett had made his first public comments about the incident on Friday in a written statement that said he had been “consistent on every level” with the police during their investigation, countering comments on social media saying he had changed his story and been uncooperative with investigators.
“I am working with authorities and have been 100% factual and consistent on every level,” the statement said.
Chicago police also said Smollett has been cooperative and they have found no reason to think he’s not being genuine.