Comedian returning to host SNL sparks backlash

SNL’s decision to bring back Dave Chappelle has proven to be controversial. (Getty/Eamonn M. McCormack)

Saturday Night Live (SNL) has faced a furious backlash after announcing anti-trans comedian Dave Chappelle will host the show.

Chappelle, who has declared himself to be on “team TERF”, will host the NBC sketch show on 12 November.

In his 2019 Netflix special Sticks & StonesChappelle declared trans people “hate my f*****g guts and I don’t blame them”, adding he “can’t stop writing jokes” about the trans community.

He said he didn’t realise that he was “breaking an unwritten and unspoken rule of show business” where “you are never, ever, allowed to upset the alphabet people”.

“I feel bad for the Ts,” he adds. “But they’re so confusing… the fact is if a person can be born in the wrong body, they have to admit that’s af***ing hilarious predicament.”

The announcement has disappointed SNL fans, with fans taking issue with his history of transphobia and sharing concerns he might use the platform to make more jokes about vulnerable LGBTQ+ people.

One Twitter user said they had been a fan of SNL “all my life”, but added: “Having Dave Chappelle on as host is not the move.

“You have your first non-binary cast member ever and then you book an proud and open transphobe. What a disappointment.”

Sharing screenshots of recent anti-trans media coverage in the US, another said: “THIS s**t is why SNL giving Dave Chappelle a platform is dangerous, and why none of us – especially our allies, whose voices aren’t as drowned out as ours – should shut up about it.

“A war is being waged on trans people (and trans KIDS) every single day, and he helps it grow.”

In his Netflix special The Closer, Released in 2021, Chappelle defended JK Rowling and rapper DaBaby, who faced backlash over a number of his remarks about AIDS and HIV and the LGBTQ+ community, among many other anti-trans jokes.

PinkNews NBC has approached for comment.

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