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The Normalization of Anti-Semitism Through Dave Chappelle's SNL Monologue

The Normalization of Anti-Semitism Through Dave Chappelle's SNL Monologue
Will Heath/NBC via Getty Images

"It's not a crazy thing to think," Chapelle said. "But it's a crazy thing to say out loud."

(CNN)— Dave Chappelle's comments about the Jewish community during his Saturday Night Live monologue are being slammed as anti-Semitic.

Anti-Defamation League chief executive officer Jonathan Greenblatt took to Twitter on Sunday to criticize the comedian and the NBC late night show.

"We shouldn't expect @DaveChappelle to serve as society's moral compass, but disturbing to see @nbcsnl not just normalize but popularize #antisemitism," Greenblatt tweeted. "Why are Jewish sensitivities denied or diminished at almost every turn? Why does our trauma trigger applause?"

The controversial comic hosted the show and addressed the firestorm around Kanye West, who has legally changed his name to "Ye," following his remarks about Jewish people.

Chappelle began the show by reading a statement which said "I denounce anti-Semitism in all its forms, and I stand with my friends in the Jewish community."

"And that, Kanye, is how you buy yourself some time," Chappelle joked.

He went on to say that Ye had broken "the show business rules" which are "the rules of perception."

"If they're Black, then it's a gang. If they're Italian, it's a mob," Chappelle said. "But if they're Jewish, it's a coincidence and you should never speak about it."

Chappelle went on to talk about the abundance of Jewish people in Hollywood.

"But that doesn't mean anything," he said. "There's a lot of Black people in Ferguson, Missouri. Doesn't mean they run the place."

Chappelle said he could see "if you had some kind of issue, you might go out to Hollywood and start connecting some kind of lines and you could maybe adopt the illusion that Jews run show business."

"It's not a crazy thing to think," he said. "But it's a crazy thing to say out loud."

Writer Adam Feldman tweeted "That Dave Chappelle SNL monologue probably did more to normalize anti-Semitism than anything Kanye said."

"Everyone knows Kanye is nuts," Feldman wrote. "Chappelle posits himself as a teller of difficult truths. It's worse."

CNN has reached out to reps for Chappelle and NBC for comment.

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