Dave Chappelle's 'SNL' Opening Monologue—Read in Full

Dave Chappelle opened his Saturday Night Live hosting appearance by discussing Kanye West and antisemitism.

The comedian, 49, previously received criticism for his 2021 Netflix special, The Closer, where he made jokes that targeted transgender people. At the time, members of the LGBTQ+ community and advocacy groups slammed Chappelle, and hundreds of Netflix employees even walked out of the company's Los Gatos, California, headquarters in protest after its release.

As a result, the announcement of his hosting gig on SNL was met with criticism.

"Wait I thought I canceled him. Is it possible cancel culture isn't a real thing??" one person wrote on Twitter.

Another said: "Having Dave Chappelle host SNL again is a slap in the face to trans people, including one of their own new cast members. What the hell Lorne?!"

Psychologist Dr. Sebastian M. Barr, who often writes about transgender health, added: "I don't love reminders that the general public and even creators I enjoy don't care about my community. Dave Chappelle on SNL is sadly not surprising but f****** hurts."

When Chappelle returned to host the show for the third time on Saturday night, he tackled other issues.

Read the full transcript of Dave Chappelle's Saturday Night Live monologue:

Thank you, thank you very much for being here. Before I start tonight, I just wanted to read a brief statement that I prepared.

I denounce antisemitism in all its forms and I stand with my friends in the Jewish community. And that, Kanye, is how you buy yourself some time.

I gotta tell you guys, I've probably been doing this for 35 years now, and early in my career, I learned that there are two words in the English language that you should never say in sequence, and those words are 'the' and 'Jews.' Never heard someone do good after they said that.

Kanye's gotten into some scrapes before. Normally when he's in trouble, I pull up, I pull up immediately. But this time, I was like, 'You know what, uh, let me see what's gonna happen first. I just wanna see...'

I can't even remember how it started. Vaguely I remember it started with a tweet, strange tweet. It was like, 'I'm feeling a little sleepy. I'm gonna get my some rest, but when I wake up, I'm gonna go DEFCON 3 on the Jews.' And then he just went to bed. I was up all night worried. What is he going to do to the Jews?

I grew up around Jewish people. I have a lot of Jewish friends, so I'm not freaked out by your culture. I know a little bit about it just by hanging around like, 'Yo, let's go out after school tomorrow,' they'd be like, 'We can't go out, it's Shanana tomorrow.' I'd be like, 'What? What is Shanana?'

I have so many questions. Why do some of you people dress like Run DMC?

Dave Chappelle "Dave Chappelle: Untitled" U.K. Premiere
Dave Chapelle attends the U.K. premiere of "Dave Chappelle: Untitled" at Cineworld Leicester Square on October 17, 2021 in London, England. The comedian opened up his "Saturday Night Live" appearance on November 12 by talking about Kanye West. Samir Hussein/WireImage/Getty Images

Kanye woke up from that nap, he went right to work.

A year ago, I had seen him on a podcast called Drink Champs, uh, great show. And it was an amazing appearance. Noreaga and rappers that I love, and they all had their gold chains and stuff on. And Kanye said, 'Only millionaires wear chains.' They said, 'What?' He said, 'I'm a billionaire. Billionaires don't wear money on their body.' I took my chain and I said, 'Oh, snap.'

It was a good appearance. It was fun and funny. But when he woke up, he went on Drink Champs again. This time, he was mad about something. He said, 'I can say antisemitic things and Adidas can't drop me. Now what?' Adidas dropped that n***** immediately. Ironically, Adidas was founded by Nazis. I guess the students have surpassed the teacher.

It's a big deal. He had broken the showbusiness rules. You know, the rules of perception. If they're Black, then it's a gang. If they're Italian, it's a mob, but if they're Jewish, it's a coincidence and you should never speak about it.

Kanye got in so much trouble Kyrie got in trouble. Kyrie Irving posted a link to a movie that he had seen on Amazon, no caption on the poster nothing like that, but apparently this movie had some antisemitic tropes and it had some weird title like From He-Bro to Negro or something.

The NBA told him he should apologize and he was slow to apologize and the list of demands to get back in their good graces got longer and longer, but, this, this is where you know I draw the line. I know Jewish people have been through terrible things all over the world but but you can't blame that on Black Americans. You just can't. You know what I mean? Thanks for the one person that said woo. A fair punishment would be to just post a link to Schindler's List and y'all just write your own captions. Cuz Kyrie Irving's Black a** was nowhere near the Holocaust. In fact, he's not even certain it existed.

I saw one news pundit screaming about Kanye and she said, 'Mental health is no excuse for that type of language.' Yes it is b****. You can kill somebody if you're mentally ill. And listen, okay, I don't think Kanye is crazy at all, I think he's possibly not well. I've been to Hollywood. And I don't want y'all to get mad at me, I'm just telling you this is just what I saw. It's a lot of Jews. Like a lot. But that doesn't mean anything, you know what I mean? There's a lot of Black people in Ferguson, Missouri. It doesn't mean we run the place. I would see if you had some kind of issue, you might go out to Hollywood, you might start connecting some kind of lines, and you could maybe adopt the delusion that the Jews run showbusiness. It's not a crazy thing to think. But it's a crazy thing to say out loud in a climate like this.

Now the midterms are over in this crazy climate and I gotta tell you, I feel this midterm, like all of humanity depends on it. And it's an ominous sign. The most ominous sign in the midterms I believe would be Herschel Walker who I don't wanna speak badly of because he's Black. But I have to admit he's um... he's observably stupid.

Even when he's not talking, his mouth be open a little bit like... He's the guy that looks like he thinks before he makes a move on Tic-tac-toe. And watching the news now they're declaring the end of the Trump era. Now okay, I could see how in New York you might believe this is the end of his era. I'm just being honest with you, I live in Ohio amongst the poor whites. A lot of you don't understand why Trump was so popular but I get it because I hear it every day. He's very loved. And the reason he's loved is because people in Ohio have never seen somebody like him. He's what I call an honest liar. And I'm not joking right now, he's an honest liar. That first debate, I've never seen anything like it. I've never seen a white male billionaire screaming at the top of his lungs, 'This whole system is rigged,' he said. And across the stage was white woman Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama sitting there looking at him like, 'No it's not.'

I said, 'Now wait a minute bro, it's what he said.' And the moderator said, 'Well Mr. Trump if, in fact, the system is rigged as you suggest, what would be your evidence?' Remember what he said, bro? He said, 'I know the system is rigged because I use it.' I said Goddamn. And then he pulled out an Illuminati membership card, chopped a line of cocaine up in it and [mimics sniffing].

No one ever heard someone say something so true and then Hillary Clinton tried to punch him in the taxes. She said, 'This man doesn't pay his taxes,' he said, 'That makes me smart.' And then he said, 'If you want me to pay my taxes, then change the tax code. But I know you won't because your friends and your donors enjoy the same tax breaks that I do.' And with that, my friends, a star was born. No one had ever seen anything like that. No one had ever seen somebody come from inside of that house outside and tell all the commoners we are doing everything that you think we are doing inside of that house. And he just went right back in the house and started playing the game again.

Democrats were sore losers. I'm a Democrat, and I'm telling you as soon as he won, they started saying all that he's colluding with Russia, he's colluding with Russia. It was very embarrassing as a Democrat, but as time went on, we all came to learn he was probably colluding with Russia. I even look at his wife different now. His wife is beautiful, no question about it, but she looks like the kind of chick that James Bond would smash but not trust.

Why he got all them documents at his house, what is this? This guy that's famous for not reading his press briefings now suddenly got 10,000 documents in his house and won't take them [unintelligible]. I've been fired from jobs many times in my life, and I will be very honest with you, sometimes when I was fired, I stole things from the office. Staplers, computer mouses, all kinds of stuff, but you know what I never stole from work? Work.

War in Ukraine brought it all into focus. And lucky for everyone in the Western world, Ukrainians are way better fighters than we thought they'd be. I mean these guys, God bless them. They killed 10,000 Russians the first week of the war. Even the Vietnamese were like Goddamn those are some good numbers. This was before they had weapons. Before we started sending them weapons, they was killing Russians with things you can find around the house. That whole country of Ukraine was littered with traps like Home Alone. They were stepping on rakes... ahhh! How is Russia losing to the Ukraine? That would be like America losing a war to Colorado.

Now the midterms are over and everybody's away, these new whites, man, the whites they're like newborn babies who just woke up. Everything white people are mad about, we been on that. Man, I can't see my family. Black people like we been on that. Man, we can't trust the government. We been on that! Man, we should dismantle the FBI. Word to Martin Luther King bro, we've been on that.

Nobody listens to me when I tell these jokes, you ignore me. My first Netflix special what did I say? I said I don't want a sneaker deal because the minute I say something that makes those people mad, they're gonna take my sneakers away. And the whole crowd was like ha ha ha ha ha. Now you see Kanye walking around L.A. barefoot with his chain on. This guy lost a billion and a half dollars in a day. A billion and a half dollars in a day. I saw that and I said 'put your chain on n*****, welcome back.' It shouldn't be this scary to talk about anything. It's making my job incredibly difficult, I'll be honest with you. I'm getting sick of talking to a crowd like this. I love you to death and I thank you for your support. And I hope they don't take anything away from me. Whoever they are.

We got a great show tonight, Brooklyn's finest Black Star is in the building.