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(Video: Fox News)
Reacting to the news that an audience member charged the stage and tackled comedian Dave Chappelle Tuesday evening during a show at the Hollywood Bowl, pundit and podcaster Dave Rubin implied that the incident demonstrates that America is in a “very weird place” insofar as the violence-related threat to free speech is concerned.
In an appearance on the Fox News Channel on Wednesday morning, Rubin, a former liberal with a stand-up comedy background, seemed to acknowledge in response to a question about the incident from “Fox & Friends” co-host Brian Kilmeade that performers now have the Will Smith slapping incident in their thoughts.
“I think, unfortunately, it has to be in the back of your mind somewhere,” Rubin told Kilmeade in the clip embedded above. “Yeah, I mean, I just finished up eight nights in eight cities, in sold-out comedy clubs all over the east coast, about to head out to the west coast.
“And it just has to sit there that there is a group of people in America, who for years now, have been telling us that they think that words are violence. So if you say something mean, that somehow is a violent act, but actual violence, say, like burning down a Target or a Pep Boys is not violence,” he continued, in an apparent reference to anti-free-speech anarchists.
“I mean, look, when you go to comedy clubs, you might hear something that upsets you. You might hear something that offends you. That is the point of going to a comedy club. A good comedian is gonna get close to that line, and maybe trip over it every now and again,” Rubin continued. “But you cannot violently assault anyone, just like if you were at a restaurant, and the guy at the table next to you said an off-color joke or something that you didn’t like, you can’t just punch them.”
— abazar 🦇🔊 (@abazar) May 4, 2022
“But we are in a very, very weird part of this American story right now, where people believe that their offense is an excuse to either attack other people or doxx other people or somehow try to ruin other people’s lives, and this is a really bad precedent. And it was good to see that Chappelle’s okay, and they joked about it afterwards with Chris Rock, but it’s bad news,” Rubin concluded.
The above-mentioned Rock, the recipient of the famous or infamous slap at the Academy Awards ceremony on March 27, was in attendance and “came on stage and gave Chappelle a hug before saying, “Was that Will Smith?'” the New York Post reported.
After the Smith-Rock incident, some speculation emerged that copycat incidents might unfortunately occur.
According to the Post, “LAPD spokesperson Officer Lizeth Lomeli said the suspect was arrested for assault with a deadly weapon. Lomeli said the suspect was carrying a replica handgun that had a blade inside.”
Security swarmed the alleged assailant, and video purportedly shows first responders removing him from the venue on a stretcher.
Just came out of the Hollywood Bowl where a man charged and tackled Dave Chapelle on stage and got his ass kicked by at least 10 people.
LAPD and LAFD are now loading him into an ambulance pic.twitter.com/7SXPe9e8az
— Brianna Sacks (@bri_sacks) May 4, 2022
F’d around and found out. It’s probably a bad idea to attack Dave Chappelle. pic.twitter.com/bs8E3lZx0d
— Anthony Lewis (@Anthony_H_Lewis) May 4, 2022
Chappelle also thanked actor Jamie Foxx for also coming to his assistance.
In various Twitter video clips [*Warning for language], Chappelle continued with his performance and quipped, among other things “I don’t know if that was part of the show…I grabbed the back of that n—-s head, his hair was spongy, absorbent.”
— E5QUIRE (@e5quire) May 4, 2022
He also reportedly joked “It was a trans man.” This may have been a callback to some gender-related comments that Chappelle previously made in the Netflix “The Closer” comedy special.
Chappelle, 48, a liberal on most issues, avoided being cancelled in the aftermath of the controversy, especially since the Tuesday performance was part of the “Netflix Is A Joke” festival.
— DoZay (@DoZay1) May 4, 2022
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