Last night at a show in New Orleans (where he performed with the Anti-Bill Cosby Crusader himself, Hannibal Buress), Dave Chappelle opened up about a less-than-pleasant experience he had visiting the city earlier in his career. As the conversation turned to the death of Eric Garner at the hands of a police chokehold, Chappelle offered up the following story (since no recording was allowed, this story comes via NOLA.com’s Jarvis DeBerry, who was at the show):
“Chappelle said he was working on his ‘first movie’ here in New Orleans. He was playing a mugger, he said. He was dressed for the part. The movie set was surrounded with police tape. He ducked under it. Then a police officer set upon him and immediately started choking him.
According to the Internet Movie Database, Dave Chappelle played a mugger in the 1993 movie ‘Undercover Blues,’ part of which was filmed in New Orleans. The movie was shot in the summer of 1992. Filming ended the same month Chappelle celebrated his 19th birthday.
One of the women working on the set saw what was happening to the actor and yelled to the police officer that he belonged on the set. After relaxing his hold on Chappelle's neck the police officer said, according to the comedian, ‘Well why didn't he say something?’
The weirdest thing about being a black man being choked by the police, Chappelle said, is that you don't even wonder why it's happening. You just think, he said, ‘OK, here we go.’”
Um, maybe Chappelle didn't "say something" because he was being choked? If this is what happened when he was dressed like a simple criminal, imagine what would have happened if he were dressed as Tyrone Biggums.