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Dave Chappelle has continued to defend comments made in his stand up special that sparked a walkout by Netflix employees who claimed he was targeting the trans community.
Chappelle’s new special The Closer sees the comedian defend transphobic comments made by JK Rowling, stating that ‘gender is a fact’ and labelling himself ‘team TERF’ (the acronym for trans-exclusionary radical feminist).
Following numerous complaints and official action taken by Netflix employees to show their support for the trans community, Chappelle has broken his silence on the backlash, posting a clip that sees him claim to support the LGBTQ+ community while being unapologetic about his comments.
‘It’s been said in the press that I was invited to speak to the transgender employees of Netflix and I refused,’ Chappelle said as the audience cheers the idea of him refusing to meet with trans employees, before continuing, ‘That is not true – if they had invited me, I would have accepted it, although I am confused about what we would be speaking about.’
I said what I said, and boy, I heard what you said. My God, how could I not? You said you want a safe working environment at Netflix. It seems like I’m the only one who can’t go to the office anymore.
Do not blame the LGBTQ community for any of this. It’s about corporate interests, and what I can say, and what I cannot say. For the record, and I need you to know this, everyone I know from that community has been loving and supporting, so I don’t know what this nonsense is about.
Chappelle went on to say he was ‘more than willing’ to meet and speak with members of the trans community, but that he would not let them ‘summon’ him and had ‘some conditions’ for a meeting, including requiring those attending to have watched his special from start to finish.
He also hit out at comedian Hannah Gadsby, who publicly criticised Chappelle’s special calling Netflix an ‘amoral algorithm cult’, telling his audience that to meet with him trans people must admit that Gadsby was ‘not funny’.
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