Supporters praised comedian Dave Chappelle Monday for his response to the controversy surrounding his new Netflix special “The Closer,” as he declared he was “not bending to anybody’s demands” following left-wing backlash over remarks he made about transgendered people.
Critics lambasted Chappelle over the special, which first aired earlier this month, claiming he had gone “too far” in his jokes, and that he was transphobic and homophobic. A small group of Netflix employees also staged a walkout last week to protest the special.
“To the transgender community, I am more than willing to give you an audience, but you will not summon me. I am not bending to anybody’s demands. And if you want to meet with me, I’d be more than willing to,” Chappelle said in a video posted to his Instagram, before adding certain “conditions” needed to be met before meeting.
Chappelle also blamed “corporate interests” for efforts to cancel him following the backlash over the special, and claimed that the LGBTQ community had actually been “loving and supporting” towards him.
Supporters reacted on social media to Chappelle’s defiance to the criticism, with some imploring him not to bend under pressure, and others declaring that standing up against the criticism would stop the “madness” of cancel culture.
“Dave Chappelle is not a Republican or a Democrat, he’s a comedian. He’s not supposed to reaffirm your political beliefs, he’s supposed to make jokes. Leave the man alone!” wrote one supporter, while another suggested it would set a bad precedent to cancel him.
“Man gotta love Dave Chappelle!!!! And all that has an issue with him is EXACTLY what’s wrong with the world…” wrote retired NFL linebacker Nic Harris, while another supporter declared, “When you’re right, never give an inch.”
Chappelle did, however, face some criticism over his response to the controversy, with some critics slamming him for wanting to dictate instead of listen, as well as for being a millionaire complaining to a packed arena about being cancelled.
Fox News’ David Rutz contributed to this report.