Dave Chappelle Criticized by GLAAD, Human Rights Campaign for Transphobic Jokes in New Netflix Special

LGBTQIA+ organizations took to Twitter after the comedian declared himself a ”TERF“ in his special ”The Closer“


Dave Chappelle is facing backlash from prominent social justice organizations for jokes targeting trans and LGBTQ+ people in his new special ‘The Closer,’ which debuted on Netflix Tuesday.

“Gender is a fact,” he stated at one point in his half-hour set. “Every human being in this room, every human being on Earth, had to pass through the legs of a woman to be on Earth.” Chappelle then riffed about the genitalia of trans women, which he described as “not what it is.”

The 48-year-old comedian also drew heat for defending J.K. Rowling, the “Harry Potter” author who has been repeatedly criticized for making transphobic comments.

Said Chappelle, “They canceled J.K. Rowling – my God. Effectually she said gender was a fact, the trans community got mad as s—, they started calling her a TERF.”

TERF stands for “trans-exclusionary radical feminist” — feminists who do not believe trans women are women. Chapelle then went on to declare himself “Team TERF.”

In response, the Human Rights Campaign “CC”‘d Chappelle on Twitter, writing that “Trans women are women. Trans men are men. Non-binary people are non-binary.”

“It is deeply disappointing that Netflix allowed Dave Chappelle’s lazy and hostile transphobia and homophobia to air on its platform,” David J. Johns, executive director of The National Black Justice Coalition said in a statement posted on the organization’s Twitter account. “… We do not condone violence against any members of our community and our feelings and existence as trans, queer and non-binary/non-conforming people matter too.”

In response to NPR critic Eric Deggans’ review of the special – which called Chappelle out for his “button-pushing jokes about about gay people, trans people, and feminists” – the LGBTQ+ organization GLAAD chimed in with its own statement.

“Dave Chappelle’s brand has become synonymous with ridiculing trans people and other marginalized communities,” said the organization. “Negative reviews and viewers loudly condemning his latest special is a message to the industry that audiences don’t support platforming anti-LGBTQ diatribes. We agree.”

Check out the tweets below:

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