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Dave Chappelle saga: Woke Netflix SJWs threaten walkout, CEO caves

Written By | Oct 21, 2021
Dave Chappelle, Netflix special

Screen grab from “The Closer,” Netflix’ controversial Dave Chappelle comedy special.

WASHINGTON – Until a couple of days ago, I’d only know about comedian Dave Chappelle by reading the occasional PC snipe-fests aimed at his direction. His brand of standup comedy is “controversial.” Meaning that the stories and jokes in Chappelle’s latest Netflix special are aimed at anyone who acts like an idiot, without regard to the target’s race, color, ethnicity, or national origin.

Dave Chappelle and the ongoing Woke Zombie Apocalypse

Odd? Isn’t idiocy what standup comedy is generally about? At least until the current era of “social justice,” wokism, gender fluidity, and “personal pronouns. Unfortunately, Chappelle consistently dives into this forbidden territory as well in his comedy. And this “triggers” the wokist thought police.

These self-appointed and often sadistic bullies remind me of the self-appointed “religious police” in Saudi Arabia. These self-important sadists once – and perhaps still – would roam the streets of Saudi Arabia’s urban areas. They looked for targets – any targets – that they deemed to violate their extreme interpretation of Islam.

Whenever they found a target, ranging from a hijab infraction or discovering someone enjoying secular music on a (well-concealed) boom box, they’d loudly denounce the victim. Then, they’d proceed to beat or whip the victim within an inch of their life.

That’ll teach them. To be afraid. Very afraid.

The game that hate-filled wokist psychos play against the rest of us

Today’s hate-filled wokist psychos play the same game whenever they find an opportunity. Piss them off for whatever reason, and they’ll go after your reputation, your job, your family, your finances. Whatever. And they’ll drive you into the ground, hopefully (for them) ruining your life forever. Before moving on to the next hapless victim.

There’s no point in caving to these psychopaths, either. That encourages them to go bigger and bolder when they find their next victim or victim class. Unfortunately, the latter category includes pretty much all of us. And, of course, Dave Chappelle. Oh, and guess what. Dave’s blackness doesn’t protect him either. This is because blacks are now even lower on the totem pole of wokeness. Even less than all those hyper-privileged whites we hear so much about.

That’s because today’s top protected and offended class is firmly and loudly leading the already privileged LGBTQWTF minorities. In this case, we’re talking “T” for “transgender.” You know, the protected class to which the alleged teenage double rapist involved in two Loudoun County (Virginia) attacks earlier this year belongs.

This presents a problem for Dave Chappelle. His current favorite comedic target is that exceptional transgender class. However, one defines it these days.

Reviewing “The Closer.” Comedy with a surprisingly high intellectual content pulled off by a masterful pre-PC comedian and social critic

My curiosity piqued last week about what all the Dave Chappelle commotion was about, driving me to tune in his latest standup comedy special on Netflix’s streaming service.

It’s entitled “The Closer.” Sure enough, Dave targeted the most privileged transgender people he’d run into in recent years. But he also targeted blacks, Asians, and, of course, whites. That’s what we used to call equal opportunity comedy. The performer dumps on everyone.

The jokes and stories in Chappelle’s routine were well-aimed, on point, and as funny as hell. And even, G_d forbid, poignant at times.

Including the sad, personal story he recounted as his monologue’s “closer.” (It was a bit beyond PG-13, as well. But for most secularized Americans these days, that no longer matters.)

‘The Closer’: Chappelle, Netflix cancels culture content kerfuffle continues

What was particularly impressive about Chappelle’s performance was its high intellectual caliber and its deeply introspective examination of human foibles. “The Closer,” in fact, aside from taking equal opportunity jabs at every possible human situation, was the constant undercurrent of Chappelle’s underlying message. It’s a message easily understood by anyone paying attention to what Chappelle says instead of looking for ways to be “offended” by his comedy.

The medium is in the message.

“The Closer’s” message was simple: Let’s all cut out the non-productive and unhelpful wokist crap. Let’s lay off the constant anger and hate that’s infected nearly the entirety of what’s left of America’s once-civil society. No one is particularly special. But their lives are their business, not ours.

Ditto with our lives as well.

Meanwhile, any rational person understands that sometimes, classes, sub-classes and individuals act absurdly and thus become ridiculously funny. And no one can protect them, or us, from that simple fact. So we get to laugh at the foibles and quirks of others as we often need to laugh at our own.

All of which means, in the end, that people need to get over themselves. They need to re-discover what made – and could still make – this country great. Finally. Or again. Freedom from artificial, self-appointed wokist bullies who wield the “cancel culture” against us all to feel better about themselves – at all our expense – might prove an excellent first step.

Chappelle’s was a remarkable and positive message. It proved particularly effective because it underscored every uproariously funny comment, joke, and bizarre real-life (more or less) story Chappelle tossed out to his enthusiastic and diverse live audience in Detroit.

No pleasing the woke, or their current most-privileged class

But, of course, today’s current most privileged class – the “transgender” class – was already lying in wait for “The Closer.” As Chappelle noted, this routine was the last of several comedy specials Netflix had contracted him to do. But the already pre-offended class bullies were all set to find something to “offend” them again.

Even if Chappelle had spent his entire show preaching the Gospels of Jesus Christ. Which, of course, would be clearly “offensive.”

Chappelle was obviously aware of this. But he proceeded anyway, happily offending any equal opportunity idiot he could target, just as he always does. He was not intimidated. But he was clearly aware of the Offended Class that always lurks just outside, addressing the issues at hand without backing down. That’s why “The Closer” was, frankly, a masterful performance. This is classic standup comedy, but with a surprisingly well-thought-out moral core.

But leave it to the Woke Elites to ignore the deeper content in “The Closer.” Instead, they quickly targeted a subset of the show’s jokes to mount a by-now typical “hate and cancel” attack. One they had already prepared in advance. And to make things more interesting, they decided to go most intensely for the “cancel” part. Not content with slandering Chappelle, they attacked Netflix itself for daring even to schedule Chappelle. Let alone allow him to do his own thing without the aid of a sensor.

Traditional culture and morality? Fair game. But not “wokist culture.”

The Woke Elites, of course, never paused to think about all the “woke” programming they routinely force various media outlets to schedule. This includes a great deal of content that offends Christians and other currently out-of-favor groups. I’m not too fond of this woke stuff either. Yet this kind of offensive content is okay with the Marxist, secularist left. Because Christians are “offensive.”

But if Netflix feels fine about “offending” Christians and family values in some of its shows, what’s the problem with “offending” the other side as well? Equal opportunity, right? The Woke Elite never has an answer to this paradox. No explanation, that is, aside from more denunciations, shutdowns, consumer and advertiser boycotts, and cancellations. These people are brain dead and lack tolerance.

They are full of hate 24/7 and ready to strike at any time. “The Closer” moved them to demonstrate that readiness yet again.

A group of Netflix employees (I have no idea how many and media outlets never tell us) have now decided to stage a “walkout” against their employer. The idea, as always, is to pressure Netflix into groveling before them, promising never to put Chappelle on their streaming platform again. And, better yet, probably to extort Netflix into donating millions of dollars to fund transgender reading programs for kids at thousands of public libraries nationwide. Who knows? In the end, you can never please fanatics. So there’s no point in trying.

Making sense of wokist nonsense

Of all places, the generally disgraced former news magazine still known as Newsweek summed up the current Netflix brouhaha.

“Ahead of a planned employee walkout at Netflix, the controversial comedy special starring Dave Chappelle continues to trend on the streaming giant’s platform.

“Internal conflict at the company is expected to come to a head-on Wednesday as employees planned to walk out in protest of Netflix’s response to the backlash surrounding Chappelle’s special, which critics have called transphobic.”

Note: How many employees? And how many critics? Today, stories like these never say. But such unmodified plurals could stand for numbers ranging from 2 (plural employees and critics) to a cast of thousands. However, they tend to imply the latter, inflating the actual numbers to create the impression of mass movement.

But wait, there’s more

Back to Newsweek, which moves on to Netflix CEO Ted Sarandos and his attempt to contain the latest Wokist Elite attack on another major American corporation.

“In recent days, co-CEO Ted Sarandos has admitted to having ‘screwed up’ in handling employee concerns around what Netflix classifies as hate speech and has made a commitment to feature diverse talent.

“I’m firmly committed to continue to support artistic freedom for the creators who work with Netflix and increase representation behind the screen and on camera,” Sarandos told the Wall Street Journal.”

“The Closer” with Dave Chappelle remains among Netflix’s most popular current programs, although it no longer appears in the platform’s Top 10 list. But

“The special’s Rotten Tomatoes’ audience score has also remained high, standing at 95 percent out of more than 5,000 ratings as of Wednesday.

“Employees walking out on Wednesday have not called for the removal of The Closer or any of Chappelle’s other specials from Netflix. However, a list of demands obtained by The Verge shows that staffers are pushing for there to be more trans-affirming content.

“The list also called on Netflix to create more space for trans and non-binary people in both executive roles and its talent, as well as the inclusion of disclaimers to flag any hate speech on any of Netflix’s programs.”

This is all kinds of funny.

If you follow actual (not conjectural) numbers of currently “official” protected classes (which numbers never include “cisgendered” whites who can’t possibly be victims of “hate speech”), transgendered individuals, transvestites, and gays are already massively overrepresented in network, cable and streaming programming; and lately in advertisements, too. Where, BTW, nearly all “couples” presiding over families seem to be bi-racial and/or bi-sexual.

But the real question is, why do we need to have even more? And, BTW, why not label programs with disclaimers to “flag any hate speech” directed against white people? Oh, right, they’re not included in anything. If this all sounds completely irrational, you’re right. It is.

Early on, Netflix didn’t go full-grovel.

The company first tried to put out the artificially staged fire by merely appearing to grovel.

“Netflix released a statement ahead of the walkout, saying it ‘understand[s] the deep hurt’ that has been caused to its employees.

“‘We value our trans colleagues and allies, and understand the deep hurt that’s been caused. We respect the decision of any employee who chooses to walk out, and recognize we have much more work to do both within Netflix and in our content,’ a Netflix spokesperson said.”

A better and more productive response might have been something like the following. “We respect the personal decision of any employee who chooses to walk out of our workspace today. But if you do, we’ll fire your sorry, bigoted ass. Practice your politics at home, not here. Netflix is not a babysitting service. You don’t run this place. We do.”

Yeah, that’ll be the day.

Unfortunately, Sarandos weakened, then finally buckled to the pressure Wednesday afternoon, backtracking on his earlier stance defending Chappelle, Netflix, and their collective right to free speech. (But see our Thursday afternoon update.)

Let’s let my old friend Christian Toto take over the narrative from here.

“Sarandos finally backtracked on his initial stance. He gave a new interview to Variety in which he served up the three-word phrase the woke mob demanded.

“‘I screwed up.

“‘Obviously, I screwed up that internal communication. I did that, and I screwed it up in two ways. First and foremost, I should have led with a lot more humanity. Meaning, I had a group of employees who were definitely feeling pain and hurt from a decision we made. And I think that needs to be acknowledged up front before you get into the nuts and bolts of anything…

“‘Of course storytelling has a real impact in the real world. I reiterate that because it’s why I work here, it’s why we do what we do. That impact can be hugely positive, and it can be quite negative.’

“Remember, this is the same platform that released ‘Cuties,’ a French film showing pre-pre-teen girls in provocative costumes performing an extended, and sexual, dance scene.”

Wokists have already moved on from defending “Cuties,” of course. Because they won. Who cares about the other 50% of the audience? And who really cares about their Neanderthal ideas on sexual morals? Right?

But Christian Toto has more to say on the Dave Chappelle story.

“So how long will ‘The Closer’ remain on the platform? Its removal would be the ultimate Cancel Culture victory, of course. It doesn’t have to happen, though, for a winner to be declared in this cultural battle. It’s already game, set match, Cancel Culture.


“If the biggest comedian on the planet can’t tell the jokes he wants to tell, and the biggest streaming platform can’t have his back unconditionally, what does that say to every other standup today?

“Say the ‘wrong’ joke, and you’re next. So don’t go anywhere near what could be the ‘wrong’ joke.”

Read the rest of Christian’s exceptional article by clicking this link. (Warning: It’s even more upsetting than this one.) Meanwhile, put his movie-centric website into your Bookmarks folder. That way, you’ll get some serious insights into the other side of the entertainment issue.

Wrapping things up

This whole Dave Chappelle “wokist” controversy is just another chapter in America’s current decline. The only way to turn the page is to politely tell today’s privileged Elitist psychos to STFU and move on. Or, if that doesn’t work, maybe “cancel” a few of them right back and stand your ground. Super-idiots like these can be intimidating. But so can the rest of us if provoked. And I suspect that many today are indeed provoked.

And think of this: How many members of this terribly offended but privileged wokist minority actually pay Netflix for anything? Most members of today’s far-left goon squads doesn’t even have enough money to buy any of the products they urge you to boycott or cancel? How many subscribers is Netflix going to lose by telling a tiny minority of cranky, woke “T” s to stuff it?

The real finale…

The sooner individuals and corporations send maniacs like these packing, the sooner we can all get back to rebuilding our Covid- and wokist-shattered families and lives. And the sooner America can get back to being a free country with free people. As opposed to a budding gulag with spies and wokist religious police hiding behind every tree. It’s no way to live.

Tellingly, that’s what Dave Chappelle tried to explain in “The Closer.” If you haven’t already done so, check out “The Closer” on Netflix before the company’s C-Suite wimps decide to take it down. If you’re not yet infected with the Woke Virus, you’ll have a good time, enjoy lots of laughs, and learn a few things about what normal life actually feels like in a real-world where everyone learns how to get along.

But if that’s not your cup of tea, what the hell is wrong with you anyway? As for me, I’m with Dave.


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Terry Ponick

Biographical Note: Dateline Award-winning music and theater critic for The Connection Newspapers and the Reston-Fairfax Times, Terry was the music critic for the Washington Times print edition (1994-2010) and online Communities (2010-2014). Since 2014, he has been the Senior Business and Entertainment Editor for Communities Digital News (CDN). A former stockbroker and a writer and editor with many interests, he served as editor under contract from the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) and continues to write on science and business topics. He is a graduate of Georgetown University (BA, MA) and the University of South Carolina where he was awarded a Ph.D. in English and American Literature and co-founded one of the earliest Writing Labs in the country. Twitter: @terryp17