Michael Jackson’s accusers have fired back at comedian Dave Chappelle after he dismissed their allegations of child sex abuse.
In his new Netflix special Sticks & Stones, the stand-up comedian addressed the controversial documentary Leaving Neverland – in which Jimmy Safechuck and Wade Robson detail Jackson’s alleged sexual abuse of them as children – and said: “I don’t believe these motherf***ers. I do not believe them.”
While the comedian made it clear that he didn’t believe the allegations, he went on to joke that it would be better to be abused by Michael Jackson than someone who isn’t famous.
“I mean, it’s Michael Jackson. I know more than half the people in this room have been molested in their lives, but it wasn’t no goddamn Michael Jackson, was it?
“This kid got his d*** sucked by the King of Pop. All we get is awkward Thanksgivings for the rest of our lives. You know how good it must have felt to go to school the next day after that s****?”
In response to Chappelle’s new material, Safechuck told TMZ that he was “heartbroken” for the children who may be too scared to come forward about their sexual abuse.
“I’m heartbroken for all those children who look to see how they will be received when they finally find the courage to speak out about their sexual abuse,” he said.
“I just want to reach out to other survivors and let them know that we can’t let this type of behaviour silence us. Together we are strong.”
Meanwhile, Robson’s lawyer Vince Finaldi said in a statement: “Although Mr. Chappelle is entitled to his opinions, however misinformed they may be, it’s unfortunate that he has chosen to use his platform to shame sexual abuse victims, and spread his ignorance of sexual abuse and the way it is perpetrated upon children, in an attempt to resurrect his career.”
However, Jackson’s estate has come out in support of Chappelle’s Netflix special, once again accusing Safechuck and Robson of lying about the alleged abuse.
“We agree with Dave Chappelle – these guys are damn liars. After years of exploiting Michael’s generosity, they waited until he was gone and unable to defend himself before accusing him,” the statement read.
“They did this in secrecy. They did not do any independent investigation. They interviewed only two guys out of the thousands who visited Neverland – oh, and surprise surprise – they are the only two with lawsuits for hundreds of millions of dollars.
“Why wasn’t their financial interest disclosed? The whole documentary is bogus. Robson and Safechuck are liars and they know the truth, which is why Dave’s comedy touched a nerve.”