A Slap Heard ‘Round the World


Jack Hallowell

Will Smith slapped Chris Rock..and the whole world had an opinion.

Jack Hollowell, Staff Writer

What is more embarrassing than being slapped across the face in front of a live audience and millions of people watching from their couch? Ask Chris Rock. On Sunday, March 27, Rock was on stage announcing the candidates for Best Actor, when he made a joke directed at Will Smith’s wife, in which he suggested she’d be starring in “G.I. Jane 2”. 

“G.I. Jane” is a movie starring a girl with buzzed hair and it was a direct shot at Jada Pinkett Smith (Will Smith’s wife). Jada suffers from a chronic hair loss disease called alopecia and was not pleased with the joke whatsoever. After smiling at the joke for a few seconds, Will took it upon himself to walk up in front of the entire audience and slap Rock across the face.

He wasn’t finished there; when he got back to his seat he yelled at Rock and used profane language to get his point across. Most people would settle it in a way where millions of people weren’t watching, but Smith acted in a heat of emotion and did what he felt was necessary. Both parties were out of line but Chris Rock was just trying to do his job and make people laugh. 

The slap has inspired countless opinions.

“Even though he is a comedian, he was out of line for making that comment. Will was even more out of line for slapping him in front of everybody.” says Nathan Tager, Senior at Chardon High School.

Tager has the same mindset as many other people who watched on Sunday night or saw the video on social media. 

All of this commotion started when Chris Rock was announcing the candidates for Best Actor, which Will Smith won shortly after. Smith played Richard Williams, in the movie King Richard.

“As a kid, I thought of Will Smith as an icon. I loved The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air,” said CHS golfer CJ Goodrich.

“It is disappointing to see him slap Chris Rock in front of millions of people,” said senior Dominic Del Zoppo. 

As an influencer himself, Kal & Pal co-host Cody Palovich knows that childish behavior is unacceptable in all instances. Many people watched Will Smith shows and films growing up and it’s upsetting to see him lash out in front of everyone. Will was acting to protect his wife and he may have overreacted; however, he doesn’t deserve the punishments handed to him by the public. At the end of it all, the Academy banned Smith from the awards show for 10 years.