Remember the episode of Chappelle’s Show that included a “racial draft”? Well, with all the talk about Rachel Dolezal, the comedian weighed in while visiting his alma mater in Washington, D.C., to give a commencement address.
But first, let’s take a look back at Chappelle’s racial draft.
“We have got to start arguing about who is what,” Chappelle said during the sketch. “We need to settle this once and for all. We need to have a draft.”
The racial draft was similar to the NFL’s or NBA’s, but included a representative from different racial and ethnic groups coming to the podium and selecting entertainers and social figures to be a part of their racial group. Among the picks, Tiger Woods is claimed by black people, Lenny Kravitz by Jews and the Wu Tang Clan by the Asian delegation.
During his commencement speech at the Duke Ellington School of Arts, Chappelle mentioned Dolezal.
“The world’s become ridiculous,” he told students. “There’s a white lady posing as a black lady. There is not one thing that woman accomplished that she couldn’t have done as a white woman. There’s no reason! She just needed the braids! I don’t know what she was doing.”
But Chappelle seemed to think that if the racial draft were real, the black delegation would snatch her up in the blink of the eye. During an interview with the Washington Post, after his commencement speech, Chappelle spoke about Dolezal and where she would go if the racial draft were real.
“I think black,” Chappelle told the Washington Post. “We would take her all day, right?”
Speak for yourself, Chappelle.
Although Dolezal’s story is what comedy dreams are made of, Chappelle said he’s not going to jump on the joke bandwagon just yet.
“The thing that the media’s gotta be real careful about, that they’re kind of overlooking, is the emotional context of what she means,” Chappelle said. “There’s something that’s very nuanced where she’s highlighting the difference between personal feeling and what’s construct as far as racism is concerned. I don’t know what her agenda is, but there’s an emotional context for black people when they see her and white people when they see her. There’s a lot of feelings that are going to come out behind what’s happening with this lady. And she’s just a person, no matter how we feel about her.”
It seems as though more people are willing to give Dolezal a pass. And the world gets more confusing every day.