Dave Chappelle's Latest Controversy Proves He's Far From Getting Back In Audiences' Good Graces

Comedian Dave Chappelle has had quite a fall from grace over the past couple of years, mostly due to his continued comments about trans people, which he has basically refused to walk back. After "The Closer" premiered on Netflix in October 2021, in which Chappelle made jokes at trans people's expense and called himself a TERF, he received huge backlash from former fans and critics on social media, who accused him of being transphobic, according to Variety. He didn't make things any better for himself when, in a speech at his former high school, titled, "What's in a Name?" (now streaming on Netflix), he defended his jokes as "artistic expression." He also, according to Rolling Stone, called the students who criticized his trans jokes "immature."

The criticism hasn't encouraged Chappelle to change his tune, nor has it stopped him from touring. However, a recent incident seems to show that he still has a way to go before fans are ready to forgive him. 

A Minneapolis venue canceled Dave Chappelle's show

Dave Chappelle was supposed to be performing a sold-out show at the Minneapolis venue, First Avenue, before the venue abruptly canceled the show at the last minute. In a statement posted to social media, First Avenue said, "To staff, artists and our community, we hear you and we are sorry. We know we must hold ourselves to the highest standards, and we know we let you down." The announcement continued, "The First Avenue team and you have worked hard to make our venues the safest spaces in the country, and we will continue with that mission. We believe in diverse voices and the freedom of artistic expression, but in honoring that, we lost sight of the impact this would have."

According to reporting from local outlet MPR News, the cancellation came after the venue was met with a barrage of complaints from staff, performers, patrons, and social media users. "It's really a slap in the face to a lot of employees," said one venue staffer. "They say that companies hang up queer flags in June and burn them in July, and that's exactly what it feels like First Avenue is doing right now."

We couldn't tell you what Chappelle's reaction to the cancelation was, but we do know that his show will go on — just at another venue.