For most of human history, actors have been associated with carnies, grifters and even prostitutes. In ancient Rome, actors were often slaves. Enter Jussie Smollett, an exasperated, black, gay actor who professed that while strolling through the mean streets of Chicago at 2 a.m. during a brutal cold spell, he was accosted by two men who happened to be supporters of our president.

Smollett accused both men of attempting to wrap a noose around his neck and pour what he thought was bleach on him, shouting anti-gay and anti-black slurs all while wearing the liberal-loathing MAGA hats.

Naturally, the overtly liberal national media was outraged along with their cronies throughout the Democratic Party. Such evident hatred of Smollett had to be inspired by President Donald Trump.

It was anything but.

“This (Chicago) is MAGA country, (expletive),” was the first clue. Moreover, Trump supporters roaming the streets of Democratic Chicago at 2 a.m. in sub-zero temperatures searching for gay minority victims — is a plot only Hollywood or a disgruntled actor seeking national recognition could hatch.

As the truth was finally revealed, such mayhem wasn’t directed by Trump, but by Smollett — proving once again that deep down all actors want to direct.

Criminal charges soon followed — and rightfully so.

Now if only Colin Kapernick could be charged with being a counterfeit social justice warrior. Of course, that’s redundant. This is the inescapable consequence of a culture that exalts and revels in victimhood. People lie about their victimization for attention, applause and status.

The much larger story from the Smollett fakery has little to do with the now infamous gay actor. It is about the continuing slide in the accuracy, objectivity and professionalism of the national news media. They are biased and bold about it and they couldn’t care less that we know it.

Smollett’s pathetic attempt to smear the president and his supporters runs parallel with Hillary Clinton’s Democratic National Committee setup of Trump with the “Russian dossier” that the media continues to browbeat daily. That it is the Russians who had colluded to steal the 2016 election from a deprived and unsuspecting Clinton.

Recently, the media became the waterboy of Andrew McCabe and his book “The Threat,” which claims Trump is a Russian agent — minus the proof. McCabe’s accusations are more detrimental than some crackpot con choreographed by some frustrated actor because the media fails to question McCabe about anything. Instead, the networks and cable outlets hire people like McCabe as a so-called “expert,” while paying them handsomely and never questioning their integrity.

The media have become dupes for every anti-Trump story that comes along. They have yet to learn that reporting without cross-checking the facts only leaves a trail of journalistic kryptonite in its wake.

These national journalists have earned our skepticism and our contempt.

Our nation needs a competent, independent and objective news media. America’s founders knew that a free and autonomous press was vital to a healthy democracy. Before the days of 24-hour cable news and the internet, there was more objectivity. Once upon a time in America, the three major networks offered a national telecast of news for 30-minutes each evening and would only interrupt programming for national or international breaking news.

Today, the priority is the bottom line, which means pandering to their target audience(s). Damn the truth so long as they get viewership and can attract a healthy stream of advertising revenue. Facts are omitted in order to advance and promote their progressive narratives.

It is beyond pathetic how quick the media jumps on every story, no matter how unbelievable, so long as it fits their creed that America is a racist, homophobic, bigoted and awful place.

Obviously, that’s why we have such a huge illegal immigration problem.

Provided you didn’t instantly believe and condemn these fabricated narratives, you must be a racist, a homophobe and if you believe that such a faux yarn is contrived — a conspiracy theorist.

Remember that the next time you hear that these social media outlets will ban “conspiracy theories” on their sites.

Acting is pretending in a fantasy world without boundaries.

Journalism and thespianism should never intersect.

When they become bedfellows — there are no winners — the Oscars included.

(Maresca, a local freelance writer, composes “Talking Points” for each Sunday edition.)

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