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Dave Chappelle heckled on surprise school visit

Dave Chappelle heckled on surprise school visit
/ Cover Media

Dave Chappelle was heckled over his jokes about transgender people during a visit to his former high school in Washington D.C. earlier this week.

Chappelle made a surprise visit on Tuesday to the Duke Ellington School of the Arts in Washington D.C., an institution he has funded to the tune of $100,000 (£75,000) and visited to host masterclasses with the likes of Bradley Cooper and Chris Tucker.

The school had postponed plans to rename its theatre after Chappelle earlier this month and abandoned plans for the comedian to appear at a fundraiser after students threatened to organise a walkout over his latest Netflix special, The Closer, in which he made controversial comments about transgender people.

According to Politico, 580 students packed out the school's auditorium to see the famous alumni, and one of them took to the microphone during a Q&A session to slam the comedian, calling him a "bigot" before adding, "I'm 16 and I think you're childish, you handled it like a child." The comments were confirmed by Chappelle's spokesperson Carla Sims.

Chappelle responded by saying, "My friend, with all due respect, I don't believe you could make one of the decisions I have to make on a given day."

According to unnamed students, another in the audience heckled him by yelling, "Your comedy kills," to which Chappelle shot back, "N****** are killed every day."

A statement from Duke Ellington spokesperson Savannah R. Overton Williams about the altercation reads: "During the conversation with students and staff, Chappelle specifically invited the voices of discontent to ask questions, however, as a result, the supporters of Chappelle became the silent majority. Our principal was approached by several students after the assembly who were disappointed that they were not able to voice their support for Chappelle in this forum."

Chappelle gave three tickets to each of the students to attend the screening of his documentary, Untitled, at Capital One Arena that night and also provided 600 Thanksgiving meals for students and staff.

 

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