Netflix is under mounting pressure today to remove Dave Chappelle’s latest special ‘The Closer’ from its streaming service after outcry from several public groups who claim the comedian made transphobic remarks.
The National Black Justice Coalition (NBJC) is one of several high-profile organizations asking Netflix to pull the special.
“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 to Deadline. “With 2021 on track to be the deadliest year on record for transgender people in the United States — the majority of whom are Black transgender people — Netflix should know better. Perpetuating transphobia perpetuates violence. Netflix should immediately pull The Closer from its platform and directly apologize to the transgender community.”
Some of the moments that were referenced by opponents in their argument to have the special removed included Dave declaring himself as a TERF, which stands for trans-exclusionary radical feminist.
Dave also expressed support for Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling, who claimed trans women posed a threat to those assigned female at birth.
GLAAD also chimed in on the controversy Wednesday, praising those who have publicly condemned Dave’s comments.
“Dave Chappelle’s brand has become synonymous with ridiculing trans people and other marginalized communities,” GLAAD tweeted. “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.”
In his special, Dave said he had no issues with the trans community despite making comments about human anatomy that many deemed bigoted.
“Gender is a fact. 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,” he said. “Now, I am not saying that to say trans women aren’t women, I am just saying that those pu***es that they got … you know what I mean? I’m not saying it’s not pu**y, but it’s beyond pu**y or impossible pu**y. It tastes like pu**y, but that’s not quite what it is, is it? That’s not blood. That’s beet juice.”
Netflix has not responded to the criticism or calls for action.