Some people who attended a Friday night comedy show where Dave Chappelle made a surprise appearance seem to have checked their senses of humor at the door.
The comic was roasted on Twitter for telling what some considered a “transphobic” joke, which was was reportedly a fairly mild quip about a very serious situation. Chappelle was attacked onstage earlier this month by a man wielding a knife made to look like a gun.
Chappelle joked that the guy who tackled him was carrying “a gun that identified as a knife,” according to witnesses who were at the show, which was headlined by comedian John Mulaney at The Ohio State University’s Schottenstein Center.
No phones or recording devices were permitted at the show, so the first clues about what Chappelle had said were from Twitter users blasting the 48-year-old standup star for saying something deeply offensive. Several outlets reported on the outrage without relaying what Chappelle had actually said.
“My favorite part of tonight was when dave chappelle ambushed us at the john mulaney show, told a bunch of transphobic jokes, a massive stadium of people laughed, and then john mulaney hugged him at the end,” one Twitter user wrote.
But when the joke made its way onto the internet, Twitter users wondered what all the fuss was about.
“So apparently the ‘horrendously transphobic joke’ that Dave Chappelle said when on stage recently was that he was ‘attacked by a trans man that had a knife that identified as a gun.’ That’s barely even a throwaway Dad joke and people are out to Lynch him,” tweeted Gary Later Eyes.
Apparently the joke Dave Chappelle said that is causing people to fall on their fainting couches is him saying he was attacked with a gun that identified as a knife.
— Frank J. Fleming (@IMAO_) May 21, 2022
The attack at the Hollywood Bowl on May 3 was no laughing matter. The alleged attacker has been identified as Isaiah Lee, 23, of Los Angeles, as previously reported by The Daily Wire.
Sources told The Los Angeles Times that Lee had a knife hidden inside a replica gun that night, but authorities say that the weapon was in a bag. Apparently, since Lee “only” tackled Chappelle, Los Angelas District Attorney George Gascón declined to seek a felony charge against Lee, sparking outrage.
“It’s a travesty of justice that Gascón is refusing to prosecute this case as a felony,” Chappelle’s lawyer, Gabriel Colwell, told the New York Post. “The city attorney, who filed the case, is doing his job but DA Gascón should also do his job and charge this as a felony.”