Patton Oswalt addressed the backlash he received after meeting controversial comedian Dave Chappelle on New Years Eve.
The 52-year-old stand-up comedian had shared several snaps with Chappelle, 48, in Seattle, Washington and called him a “genius” and “true friend,” which ruffled some feathers.
Responding to criticism regarding both the message and the friendship, Oswalt explained that although they “disagree 100% on transgender rights,” it was “impossible” to cut a 34-year-old friend despite their different beliefs.
Ruffled feathers: Patton Oswalt, 52, responded to the backlash he received after meeting controversial comic Dave Chappelle, 48, on New Years Eve, where he called him a “genius” and “true friend ”
Patton’s initial post showed several photos of him and Dave. He explained that as the two were in town to close 2021 with stand-up sets – which were right next to each other – he got a text from Chappelle to come over and do a set of guest he thought of: “Why not? ‘
“I said goodbye to this hellish year with a genius with whom I started acting 34 years ago,” he continued. “He works in an arena like he’s talking to a person and pulling his skin on him. Anyway, I ended the year with a true friend and a deep laugh. I can’t ask for much more.
Many were outraged over Chappelle’s transphobic statements in his Netflix special, The Closer, which got Oswalt to share a self-reflective style follow-up while explaining himself on January 1.
In a long caption, he apologized for any harm the post may have caused and maintained that while he and Dave wholeheartedly disagree on transgender issues, he still stands up for the friendship as well.
Self-reflection: In a long caption, he apologized for any harm the post may have caused and maintained that while he and Dave strongly disagree on transgender issues, he still stands up for the friendship also.
“I saw a friend that I hadn’t seen for a long time on New Years Eve. We’ve known each other since we were teenagers. He’s a fellow actor, the funniest I’ve ever met. I wanted to post a pic and an IG story about it – so I did. The friend is Dave Chappelle, Oswalt began.
“Thirty-four YEARS OLD we are friends. He refocused and refined ideas that many of us considered to be settled about race, history, and life on planet Earth and spun them with a phrase or punchline. We did bad and good gigs, open mics and TV recordings. But we also disagree 100% on the rights and representation of transgender people.
“I support the rights of trans people – the rights of EVERYBODY – to live safely in the whole world. For all the things he has helped Me evolve on, I will always disagree with his position NOW on transgender issues.
“But I don’t believe either that a researcher like him has finished evolving, learning. You have known someone for so long, see the struggles and the changes, it is impossible to cut them off. It is impossible not to be optimistic and open and to encourage them, ”he continued.
34 years of friendship: Many were outraged over Chappelle’s transphobic statements in his Netflix special, The Closer, which resulted in Oswalt sharing a self-reflective style follow-up on January 1 where he defended their friendship but not Dave’s beliefs
Keeping hope: “But I do not believe either that a researcher like him has finished evolving, learning”, he continued adding that if “You have known someone for so long, see the struggles and changes, it is impossible to cut them “; Chappelle, Oswalt and wife Meredith Salenger pictured on December 31
Surprise set: In his post, Patton explained that since the two were in town to end 2021 with standing sets – which were next to each other – he got a text from Chappelle to come and do a set guests to whom he thought ‘Why not?’
Oswalt continued to talk about the challenges of reconciling his desire to be a “faithful friend” of Chappelle and to maintain friendships with people who have different beliefs while also being an “LGBTQ ally”.
“Plus, I carry a LOT of guilt about friends that I cut off, who had opinions I couldn’t agree with or who changed in ways I couldn’t live with. Sometimes I wonder – did me and others cut them down made them go deeper, fuel their ignorance with a nitro-boost of resentment and spite?
“I am an LGBTQ ally. I am a staunch friend. There is friction in these traits that I need to come to terms with, and not let someone else feel betrayed. And I’m sorry, really sorry, that I didn’t think about the harm that would cause. Or the DEPTH of that injury.
Patton went on to say he messaged a lot on Instagram after the backlash and confessed, “I (naively) deleted a lot of posts in the comment thread – critical posts from LGBTQ writers AND posts shit terf / anti-trans orcs looking for clicks and laughs. ‘
Caught in the Middle: Oswalt continued to talk about the challenges of reconciling his desire to be a “staunch friend” of Chappelle and maintaining friendships with people who have different beliefs while being an “LGBTQ ally”; photo July 15
“I wanted a ‘cute comment thread’ on the photo with my friend. Ugh. So easy to think that someone ELSE needs growth and you lack the need in yourself. I’ll keep trying. .
Chappelle had ended up at the Culture Cancellation reception after saying in a segment of her Netflix special that a trans woman’s genitals were “not quite what they are” and called it the kind of “fact”.
He also declared himself a “TERF team” (radical trans-exclusionist feminist) “and defended Harry Potter author JK Rowling, accused of being transphobic.
After the outrage, he stayed with no apologies about the stage and said “I said what I said”.
There had been calls for Netflix to remove the special, but an executive at the streaming giant said the statements did not cross “the hate line” and said they were not going to remove it from the platform. form, which then caused a walkout at Netflix from LGBTQ + members and allies.
Cancel club: Chappelle found himself at the Cancellation Culture reception after his Netflix special The Closer where he said that trans woman’s genitals are “not quite what they are,” a called the genre a “fact” and declared itself a “TERF team” (radical feminist transexclusionist); photo on October 30