Dave Chappelle takes on San Francisco’s physical and moral decay

San Francisco was once a gorgeous city with a funky, edgy vibe. It’s now a decayed, filthy, and debauched hellhole. That’s not just me saying that. It’s also Dave Chappelle, who did a comedy set in San Francisco and had some things to say about the City by the Bay. His remarks were too accurate to be funny. Instead, the funniest thing was the outraged columnist who wrote about Chappelle’s gig.

SFGATE is an online spin-off of the venerable (and hard-left) San Francisco Chronicle newspaper. Dan Gentile is the outlet’s culture editor who, apparently finding Austin, Texas, too conservative for his tastes, moved to San Francisco. Gentile had the story of Chappelle’s surprise show at the Masonic Auditorium. The headline is that Chappelle came and said nasty things about San Francisco:

On his last visit to Chase Center, he brought Elon Musk onstage to a chorus of boos, and the time before that, a Hall of Fame’s worth of Bay Area rappers. At this event, there were no special guests. He didn’t mention Musk. Instead, he focused on the city’s homelessness problems. 

“What the f—k happened to this place?” he asked.

He told a story about eating at an Indian restaurant in the Tenderloin a few nights earlier, only to have someone defecate in front of the restaurant as he was walking in. San Francisco has become “half ‘Glee,’ half zombie movie,” he said, and he remarked that the whole city is the Tenderloin now. “Y’all [N-words] need a Batman!” he exclaimed. 

He wasn’t aware of the incident of a business owner hosing down a homeless person and had to have the crowd explain it. He pivoted quickly, saying he now remembered watching the video on YouTube … a hundred times. The misdirection was followed by a cruel snicker and a trademark slap of the mic against his thigh. (Emphasis mine.)

Every one of those attacks on San Francisco's decay is justified. Leftists have destroyed the city. Don’t take my word for it. Looking at what Elizabeth Weil wrote about San Francisco’s “Doom Loop.” It’s terribly depressing.

Image: Dave Chappelle (edited). YouTube screen grab.

But Gentile wasn’t really interested in what Chappelle had to say about the city or whether what he said was accurate. What deeply offends Gentile is that Chappelle doesn’t believe in transgenderism. In paragraph after paragraph, Gentile expressed his outrage for Chappelle’s failure to fall in line with the agenda:

The late transgender comic Daphne Dorman confronted him during a performance at the Punch Line, which sparked a friendship between the comics. Dorman later died by suicide. Around the same time, Chappelle’s comedy took a dark turn toward transphobia: he identified as TERF (trans-exclusionary radical feminist), declared that gender is an unmalleable fact and insinuated that the struggle for LGBTQ and Black rights are at odds.

Chappelle didn’t go deep into his TERF beliefs Thursday; instead, he settled for a barrage of transphobic dog whistles. For those following his career closely, they drowned out everything else, but what was crystal clear was his disdain for present-day San Francisco. [Emphasis mine.]

Other than the Glee reference, you will search Gentile’s article in vain for those “TERF” dog whistles. The only lines Gentile quotes are the ones I referenced above, about San Francisco’s general decay. It seems, therefore, that it’s now an “anti-trans dog whistle” to notice that San Francisco, a city famous for celebrating gay debauchery, is dystopian.

The closest thing Gentile can find to any reference to the whole transgender issue (other than that Glee remark) is that Chappelle joked that he’d agreed to cool down his attacks on so-called “transgender” people. Thus, after describing how Chappelle talked about being caught at Floyd Mayweather’s Las Vegas strip club, an attack against him at the Hollywood Bowl, Will Smith’s slap, and questions about antisemitism during his SNL monologue, Gentile writes this:

But in the media, those incidents were all footnotes compared to the controversy over his comments on the transgender community. In addition to being insensitive, they are often just plain lazy, relying on tropes rather than the comedian’s incisive wit. At the Masonic, Chappelle noted that in his last special “The Closer,” he promised to stop making jokes about the LGBTQ community — then clarified that promise only applied to TV, punctuating the joke with another slap of the mic.

True to his word, there were no extended segments about transgender people. Instead, he jabbed at the community over and over, slipping them into unrelated sections as a running punchline. (Emphasis mine.)

But again, as I noted, Gentile, who explicitly quoted Chappelle’s attacks on San Francisco, offers virtually nothing to prove the truth of that emphasized language.

Gentile would badly like to cancel Dave Chappelle. Unfortunately for him, Dave Chappelle refuses to be canceled. And, even worse, his fans agree:

[I]t was clear from the amount of laughter in the room — and his continual ability to sell out shows in the most LGBTQ+ friendly city in America — that there’s still a large portion of the population who will only ever know him as the guy that did those Rick James impressions. Those fans weren’t disappointed, but everyone else who has been paying attention would have been.

Gentile substitutes unrestrained emotion and personal feelings for factual reporting. It would take a heart of stone not to find his Chappelle review incredibly funny.

If you experience technical problems, please write to helpdesk@americanthinker.com