Chappelle willing to meet with trans groups, but has demands

Dave Chappelle

FILE – In this Oct. 27, 2019 file photo, Dave Chappelle is honored with the Mark Twain Prize for American Humor at the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington. Chappelle, Jon Stewart, Jimmy Fallon and Amy Schumer are in a star-studded group of comedians to perform Sept. 12, 2021, for one night only at Madison Square Garden to mark the 20th anniversary of 9/11. All proceeds from “NYC Still Rising After 20 Years: A Comedy Celebration” will benefit 9/11 charities. (Photo by Owen Sweeney/Invision/AP, File)

(NewsNation Now) — Comedian Dave Chappelle said he would meet with trans workers at Netflix after their criticism of his recent special, “The Closer,” but was far from conciliatory in a video released on his Instagram page.

“I said what I said, and boy I heard what you said. My God, how could I not?” the comedian said on stage.

But he was also clear: “I am not bending to anybody’s demands.”

LGBTQ+ groups have pushed back against “The Closer” because of what they say is dangerous language that could encourage harm against members of that community. Chappelle insisted he is not transphobic, and part of his special includes details of a friendship he had with a transgender comedian who died by suicide.

“Everyone I know from that community has been nothing but loving and supporting, so I don’t know what all this nonsense is about,” Chappelle said in the video.

While Chappelle said he would meet with people who are interested, he said he would not be “summoned,” and made three demands.

“First of all, you cannot come if you have not watched my special from beginning to end. You must come to a place of my choosing and a time of my choosing. And thirdly, you must admit that Hannah Gadsby is not funny.”

Gadsby is a trans comedian from Australia.

Chappelle also railed against cancel culture in the five-minute video. “You said you want a safe working environment at Netflix,” he said. “Well, it seems like I’m the only one that can’t go to the office anymore.”

He told the crowd he’s been uninvited from film festivals and distributors are balking at picking up his documentary, “Untitled.” He announced a 10-city November tour to show the movie.

“Thank God for Ted Sarandos at Netflix,” Chappelle said. “He’s the only one that didn’t cancel me yet.”

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