Chappelle on NFL Kneeling: Trump ‘Loves to be a Polarizing Dude,’ ‘F**k Him’

Dave Chappelle speaks at Backstage at the Geffen Gala on March 19, 2017, in Los Angeles. (Matt Sayles/Invision for Geffen Playhouse/AP Images)

WASHINGTON – Comedian Dave Chappelle, who was awarded D.C.’s key to the city today, said he appreciates the NFL players who kneel during the national anthem and that President Trump “loves to be a polarizing dude.”

Trump told reporters today that he “spoke to numerous team owners” about the protests, adding, “You have to stand. It’s our national anthem; you have to stand.” PJM asked Chappelle for his opinion of Trump’s criticism of the NFL players who do not stand for the national anthem in protest of racial injustice.

“Obviously, you know, like I always say, those who take a knee on the field are standing for me, so I appreciate anybody that tries to consider those who are not considered,” Chappelle said at the Duke Ellington School of the Arts.

“The thing about those types of opinions, I usually like to deal with them on the stage, because when you get paid for talking it’s just me blabbing out on the street,” he said. “But, you know, the president loves to be a polarizing dude.”

Chappelle, who graduated from the D.C. school in 1991, donated his Emmy Award to his alma mater during the ceremony in which Mayor Muriel Bowser gave him a city key to recognize how the comedian “reminds us what it means to live a life filled with purpose, meaning, and laughter.” He won the “Best Guest Actor in a Comedy Series” award this year for his Saturday Night Live hosting debut.

Trump recently said, “Wouldn’t you love to see one of these NFL owners, when somebody disrespects our flag, to say, ‘Get that son of a bitch off the field right now, he’s fired’?”

In March, Chappelle said Trump is “bad for comedy.” When asked if he still believes that, Chappelle said, “That’s probably a longer answer than I have time for in this format and today I’m just kind of happy to just be at the school, honestly, you know what I mean? Fuck him. I’m tired of talking about – excuse my language. I’m tired of talking about him. My man, sorry, I didn’t mean to be rude, but it’s just we are all sick of it. Trump, Trump, Trump.”

After the ceremony, Chappelle praised Bowser for her work on the school’s renovation. The ribbon-cutting ceremony took place in August.

“I’m very impressed with the initiatives the mayor has already taken and the proof, of course, is standing in a building that I spent four years of my life in and not even recognizing it. This is absolutely breathtaking,” Chappelle told PJM. “I’m very happy for these kids. I’m very excited about the potential of their education. I’m happy that these teachers have the tools they need to give these kids even a better education than I was able to get.”