Dave Chappelle defends JK Rowling’s comments about trans people, and says he is ‘Team TERF’ in new Netflix special

Dave Chappelle defends JK Rowling’s comments about trans people, and says he is ‘Team TERF’ in new Netflix special

  • Dave Chappelle said he was “team TERF” as he defended JK Rowling’s comments about trans people in his latest comedy special.
  • Chappelle said he has never had an issue with trans people.
  • “TERF” is an acronym for “trans-exclusionary radical feminist” — a term JK Rowling takes issue with.

Dave Chappelle is facing backlash for defending JK Rowling in his latest

comedy special “The Closer.”

In the special, Chappelle calls himself a “TERF,” an acronym for the term trans-exclusionary radical feminist, as he says he stands by JK Rowling, who was “cancelled” for her comments about trans people. 

Chappelle has faced backlash in the past for his anti-trans jokes, and responded to the criticism in 2017, telling the Washington Blade: “Do I discriminate against somebody because they’re trans? I would like to think absolutely not.” 

In his latest, and final, special for Netflix, he said his “issue” is not with trans people but instead with white people who have “cancelled” him.

He also defended rapper DaBaby, who faced backlash for his comments about gay men, and Kevin Hart, who stepped down as host of the Oscars in 2019 after homophobic tweets he had posted years prior resurfaced.

“Any of you who have ever watched me know that I have never had a problem with transgender people. If you listen to what I’m saying, clearly, my problem has always been with white people,” Chappelle said. 

‘I’m team TERF’

In the special, Chappelle addressed JK Rowling, who last year wrote an essay and published tweets about trans people that led internet users to call her a “TERF,” or a trans-exclusionary radical feminist.

“They canceled JK Rowling – my God,” Chappelle said. “Effectually she said gender was a fact, the trans community got mad as (expletive), they started calling her a TERF.”

Chappelle went on to say: “I’m Team TERF. I agree. I agree, man. Gender is a fact.”

Chappelle likened being trans to a white person pretending to be Black. He then made comments about trans women’s genitals. 

“Every human being in this room, every human being on earth, had to pass through the legs of a woman to be on earth. That is a fact.” 

At the end of the special, Chapelle said he was done professionally joking about “LBGTQ, LMNOPQXYZ people.” 

On Wednesday, the National Black Justice Coalition, a civil right group, called for Chappelle’s show to be pulled from Netflix. “It is deeply disappointing that Netflix allowed Dave Chappelle’s lazy and hostile transphobia and homophobia to air on its platform,” NBJC executive director David Johns said in a statement. 


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