Comedian Dave Chappelle spoke about a comment he allegedly made about the Israel-Hamas War, but refused to repeat what he said.
According to The Wall Street Journal, Chappelle alienated fans last week during a show in Boston on Thursday, when he made pro-Palestinian remarks.
The comedian reportedly initially condemned Hamas’ Oct. 7 attack on Israel, but called out the country for what he claimed were war crimes in Gaza.
The outlet said that the topic came up when Chappelle said that “he didn’t think students should lose job offers for supporting Palestinians.”
Dave Chappelle went on a Anti Isreal tirade at a show in Boston on Thursday. Several people left. I used to like this guy and this saddens me. Any thoughts on this? pic.twitter.com/Q0NPpsdXd5
— Matthew Nichol (@MatthewNichol5) October 23, 2023
An audience member then told the comedian to “shut up,” which caused Chappelle to go on a tirade.
He spoke about how the Israeli government was responsible for “cutting off water and other essentials to Gaza and accused it of killing innocent people.”
People in the crowd got up and left the show when audience members began cheering Chappelle on and changing “Free Palestine.”
According to a Facebook post made by one of the alleged attendees, the chaos began towards the end of the show.
“Chappelle mentioned the war in Israel and how he as a Muslim denounces Israel for its treatment of the people in Gaza and started to add in lots of false and unsubstantiated claims,” the man wrote.
In corroboration with the Journal’s report, “A gentleman towards the front yelled out ‘You should shut the F up’. Chappelle lost it on the man yelling, ‘You do not tell me to shut the F up at MY show’.”
The post noted that after the interruption, Chappelle went on “a tirade of his beliefs leaving comedy behind and focusing purely on the politics.”
The man who posted said they were Jewish, and that the crowd of nearly 20,000 “started to invoke fear,” when they began yelling “Go Palestine. Go Hamas.”
The poster said that they were “sick” over the chanting and told his wife that he thought it was time to leave.
“Never in my life have I felt so unsafe and so fearful of what I was witnessing,” he continued. “The words alone were horrific, but we were vulnerable in a public forum.”
They along with many other Jews at the show reportedly walked out.
“How could a comedy show provide such a mechanism for people to verbally shout our their hatred for Jews?” The post continued.
“The unfortunate icing on the cake was that all cell phones and communication devices had to be locked up so there is no video or audio evidence,” he concluded.
Initially, Chappelle’s spokesperson denied that he was in Boston at all, but the comedian addressed the controversy himself at a Wednesday night show in North Carolina.
“Right now, I’m in trouble because the Jewish community is upset,” Chappelle remarked according to the New York Times.
“But I cannot express this enough: No matter what you read about that show in Boston, you will never see quotation marks around anything I said. They don’t know what I said.”
The comedian referred to the reports as “hearsay.”
“The other night, I said something about Palestine in Boston and got misquoted all over the world,” the comedian reportedly continued. “And I will not repeat what I said.”
A woman in the audience allegedly shouted “Free Palestine.”
“Please, please, miss,” he continued. “Listen. Don’t start it up or I’m going to be in the news cycle for another week. This thing that’s happening in the Middle East is bigger than everybody.”
Chappelle went on to say that conflict in Israel is a “nightmare,” adding that “what’s happening in Palestine is a nightmare.”
“There’s only two kinds of people in the world: people who love other people and the people that have things to make them afraid to love other people,” he concluded.
“Pray for everyone in Israel. Pray for everyone in Palestine.”