John Stewart defended Controversial by Dave Chappelle Saturday Night Live Monologue – the comedian was accused by the Anti-Defamation League of “normalizing and popularizing” anti-Semitism – during an appearance where Late show.
Stewart has been friends with Chappelle for more than two decades, dating back at least to when they appeared together in the 1998 comedy. Half Baked. In the past few years, the two have also performed together.
“Everybody says to me, ‘You look like Dave S.N.L?’ And I say yes we are very good friends. I always watch and send good letters,” Stewart told host Stephen Colbert. “‘He normalized anti-Semitism in monologue.’ I don’t know if you’ve been in the comment sections of many news articles, but it’s very common. Anti-Semitism, it’s incredibly common. But one thing I will say is that I don’t believe that censorship and punishment is the way to end anti-Semitism or not to gain understanding. . I don’t believe that. We’re approaching it wrong.”
After the 15-minute monologue, ADL CEO Jonathan Greenblatt tweeted about Chappelle’s routine, “We shouldn’t expect @DaveChappelle to serve as society’s moral compass, but @nbcsnl should stand in the way of not just normalizing but popularizing #antipathy. Why are Jewish sensibilities denied or diminished in almost every case? Why does our vibration sound like applause? ”
However, Stewart defended both what Chappelle said and his right to say it, and stressed the importance of having these conversations openly.
“Dave said something S.N.L I thought the monologue was creative, and he says ‘things shouldn’t be so hard to talk about’. I have been called anti-Semitic because I am against the way Israel treats the Palestinians. I call other people other things based on other opinions I have, but they close the debate,” Stewart said.
“Whether it’s humor or discussion or whatever, if we’re not able to meet each other with what reality is, how are we going to move forward? If we all shut it down, we retreat into our little corner of misinformation and it changes. The whole point of all this is to air it and talk about it, not let it spread. “
The conversation then turned to Kyrie Irving and Kanye West, two other high-profile figures in hot water over anti-Semitism. “Kanye’s thing, he can be volatile and he says things, it didn’t surprise me. The Kyrie thing surprised me, you don’t expect to get that from someone named Irving,” Stewart quipped. “I really thought he was one of us.”
“Kyrie Irving, they banned him from playing basketball. If you want to punish this man, send him to the Knicks,” Stewart added. “I don’t think punishing someone for having a thought is a way to change their mind or gain understanding. This is a grown-ass man. The idea you tell him is, ‘Let’s get you ready to expire. You have to sit in a corner and stare at the wall until you no longer believe that the Jews control the international banking system.
“Comedy cuts. We play with tropes because everyone has prejudices in their lives and the way they look at things. “And comics rely on those prejudices as shorthand for our material. Even vigilantes in comics play with tropes to some extent. ”
Stewart added, “But the most interesting thing in my mind is what Kanye said on his tour that he’s been doing — the media format is arson and confrontations, so he interviewed five different people — he said. ‘People hurt people’, if the point of all this is to heal people, the only way to heal the wound is to open it up and clean it, it stings and hurts, but you have to expose it. air But I’m afraid the general conversation in this country is ‘close it, bury it, put it aside, don’t do business’. And what I’m saying is, look at it from the black man’s perspective. It’s a culture that feels its wealth has been taken away by various groups—whites, Jews—whether it’s true or not, that’s the feeling in that community, and if you don’t understand where it’s coming from, you can’t deal with it. with it.”