Michael Jackson’s accusers have responded after Dave Chappelle claimed that he doesn’t believe their allegations of sexual assault in his latest comedy special.
The comic icon’s Netflix show ‘Sticks & Stones’ was released yesterday (August 26) and sees Chappelle talk about Jackson during a segment that focuses on “cancel culture”.
Chappelle says: “This is the worst time ever to be a celebrity. You’re gonna be finished. Everyone’s doomed. Michael Jackson has been dead for 10 years, and this n**** has two new cases.”
He then urges the crowd to not watch Leaving Neverland, the documentary in which James Safechuck and Wade Robson’s allegations of sexual abuse from Jackson are directly addressed.
“Don’t watch it. … It’s fucking gross. I felt like HBO was sticking baby dicks in my ears for four hours straight,” says Chappelle.
He goes on: “I’m gonna say something that I’m not allowed to say. But I gotta be real. I don’t believe these motherfuckers. I do not believe them.”
After cheers from the crowd, Chappelle adds: “I don’t think he did it, but you know what? Even if he did do it … you know what I mean? I mean, it’s Michael Jackson. I know more than half the people in this room have been molested in their lives, but it wasn’t no goddamn Michael Jackson, was it? This kid got his dick sucked by the King of Pop.
“You know how good it must have felt to go to school the next day after that shit?”
He then adds that he didn’t believe the accusations because “why not Macaulay Culkin”, quipping: “I’m not a paedophile, but if I was, Macaulay Culkin’s the first kid I’m fucking — I’ll tell you that right now.”
Both Safechuck and Robson have now responded to Chappelle, with the former telling TMZ: “I’m heartbroken for all those children who look to see how they will be received when they finally find the courage to speak out about their sexual abuse.
“I just want to reach out to other survivors and let them know that we can’t let this type of behaviour silence us. Together we are strong.”
Robson said: “He can say whatever he wants. It reveals him, not us.” His lawyer Vince Finaldi also hit out at Chappelle over airing his “misinformed” opinions, adding: “It’s unfortunate that he has chosen to use his platform to shame sexual abuse victims, and spread his ignorance of sexual abuse and the way it is perpetrated upon children, in an attempt to resurrect his career.”
Chappelle’s manager has since defended the comic, claiming that it reflects the nature of “cancel culture”. After quoting a piece that defended the comic, she wrote: “That’s the point of this part of the set, to take the air out of that instinct and to make us wonder what it says about our inability to understand the true value—or lack thereof—in cancellation culture, because we’re too blinded by woke outrage to notice what we’re really doing to discourse.”