Patton Oswalt Defends His Friendship With Dave Chappelle After Getting Called Out On Social Media
Patton Oswalt recently made the very real celebrity social media misstep of assuming that an innocent selfie with another famous person was going to end in tons of likes and self-esteem-boosting comments. Because Patton recently posed for a picture with his good friend Dave Chappelle, and if you remember anything about Dave Chappelle’s notable achievements from last year, then you know Patton’s picture was received poorly by some people. But! Patton would like you to know that he can be both an LGBTQ ally and a friend to a comedian who has delivered some problematic takes directed towards the trans community.
Dave Chappelle made some people’s shit lists after the release of his latest stand-up special for Netflix, The Closer. Lots of people took umbrage with some of the things Dave said in regards to the trans community, which ended with poor sad Dave feeling personally attacked by the trans community and their allies, while also still kind of antagonizing the people who dared to criticize his material. So, generally, a chummy, wide-smile picture with Dave is going to come with an awful lot of questions. This is exactly what happened after Patton posted a picture of himself and his friend of 34 years, Dave Chappelle after Dave invited Patton to do a surprise guest set at Dave’s venue on New Year’s Eve in Washington:
A quick scroll through that post’s comments shows a whole bunch of people calling the two friends “legends” and celebrating their friendship. But there were people who side-eyed Patton’s glowing character review of Dave Chappelle when we’re not even so much as a year out of Dave’s Trans Thoughts. And so, Patton then posted this picture of himself, sitting pensively, and defending Dave while also admitting that he had deleted a whole lot of the comments on the previous post that were critical of his friendship with a self-identified TERF.
First of all, how lucky was Patton that someone just so happened to walk in and snap a candid picture during a moment of quiet reflection? A moment sooner or later, and they might have gotten him post-yawn or mid-scratch. And why do I get the feeling that’s the point when Patton’s publicist called him up like, “Um, Patton? Are you sure this is the friendship hill you want to die on?“.
Since Patton posted his response, several people have called him out for claiming to be an LGBTQ ally but proudly working with someone who has said hurtful things at the expense of that community. But others have congratulated him for not cutting off a friend over something they don’t fully agree on. Personally, I don’t see why Patton didn’t defend Dave and Dave’s evolution as a human, and support all the LGBTQ folks he claims to ally for. Like writing a caption for that first picture with Dave that read: “Had a great time with this guy last night, even if I spent way too long telling him to stop saying the kind of stuff that would get a thumbs up from JK Rowling (but I’ll keep working on him).”