Cancel culture really isn’t as effective as we were promised as Dave Chappelle continues to succeed based on virulent transphobia. His controversial Netflix special The closer was nominated for an Emmy on Tuesday, proving once again that the wakeful crowd didn’t do much damage to his career at all.
Chappelle has been on the anti-trans beat for a while (it’s something of a cause) of the day among wealthy celebs who apparently have nothing better to do), but The closer saw opposition to the comedian reach new heights. In response to the stand-up set, in which Chappelle proclaimed himself ‘Team TERF’, Netflix employees organized a walk-out in solidarity with their trans colleagues (one of whom reportedly fired for leaking data about the special).
Netflix, which has a very expensive deal with Chappelle, has repeatedly and unconditionally defended his work under the guise of “creative freedom and artistic expression† In an earlier statement, co-CEO . said Ted Sarandos told employees that “sometimes there are things on Netflix that you don’t like. You even find that harmful. Where we will definitely draw the line is something that would intentionally call for physically harming other people or even removing protections.” For me, the intent to cause bodily harm certainly crosses the line.”
The disregard for the real harm that platform transphobia inflicts on an extremely vulnerable population paid off with an Emmy nomination (Netflix’s other transphobic darling, Ricky Gervais, missed a nomination for his special SuperNature† Chappelle faced no real consequences for his hurtful speech (although he did try to make amends, by) accusing his attacker on stage without merit of being a “trans man”). Instead, he still enjoys critical acclaim and the backing of one of the world’s largest entertainment companies. The Television Academy is just another in a long list of institutions that tacitly endorse transphobia, and its members should be held accountable for it.