Dave Chappelle Cracks Trans Joke After On-Stage Attack In LA

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Dave Chappelle finds himself in the center of controversy, once again. It all started when police say a man armed with a fake gun with a knife blade attached to it attacked the comedian on stage at the Hollywood Bowl Arena Tuesday night. The LAPD says the incident happened during the Netflix Is A Joke festival, currently going on in LA.

Video posted on social media shows someone rushing the stage and tackling Chappelle. Security guards then detained the man. Chappelle was not hurt, and joked about the incident afterward before going on with his set. It’s what he said that has people upset. He said, “Thank you, son. It was a, it was a trans man.”

Chappelle has faced controversy in recent months over his Netflix comedy special The Closer. In the special, Chappelle makes jokes about the LGBTQ community, especially transgender people.

Just before the attack, Chappelle also had talked about needing more security because of the controversy.

This latest incident is highlighting the security concerns for comedians, especially on the heels of the infamous Oscars slap. As you remember, actor Will Smith slapped Chris Rock on stage during this year’s ceremony after Rock made a joke about Smith’s wife, Jada Pinkett Smith.

Rock also performed at the comedy festival Tuesday night. He joined Chappelle on stage after the attack and grabbed the mic and joked, “Was that Will Smith?”

Netflix issued a statement in defense of Chappelle Wednesday evening, saying in part, “We care deeply about the safety of creators and we strongly defend the right of stand-up comedians to perform on stage without fear of violence.”

Our question of the night: are people more dangerous, or is security too lax?

This episode’s panel features:
WCCB TV’s Morgan Fogarty
WCCB News @ Ten anchor Drew Bollea
WCCB TV’s Kaitlin Wright