Steve Harvey Says He Won’t Film A New Special Because ‘Cancel Culture’ Won’t Let Him Make Jokes

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Steve Harvey has shared his thoughts about how “cancel culture” has changed the landscape of comedy, suggesting that doing stand-up now would end his TV career.

While promoting his new ABC daytime courtroom series Judge Steve Harvey, the 64-year-old comedian told reporters that the only way he can do “one more special” is “if it’s at the end” of his career as he knows it.

“It will end my television career,” Harvey said at the Television Critics Association press tour. “We’re in the cancel culture now. No stand-up that is sponsor-driven can say anything he wants to.”

Giving examples of fellow comedians like Chris Rock, Kevin Hart, Cedric the Entertainer and DL Hughley, Harvey said none of them can do stand-up anymore.

“I can go down the list,” the Family Feud host said. “The only person that can say what they want to say on stage is Dave Chappelle because he’s not sponsor-driven. He’s subscription-driven.”

Chappelle was condemned after releasing his Netflix special The Closer, where he made jokes about trans people.

The special, which was released in October 2021, saw the 48-year-old comedian call himself “Team TERF [trans-exclusionary radical feminist]” and claim that “gender is a fact”.

Putting himself in the sponsor-driver category, Harvey continued: “If I had tried to continue as a stand-up, there’s no way I could maintain it.

“Political correctness has killed comedy. Every joke you tell now, it hurts somebody’s feelings,” he said, before explaining what people don’t understand about comedians.

“A joke has to be about something. It has to be about somebody,” Harvey said. “We can’t write jokes about puppies all the time. The joke can’t be about bushes all the time. Some of these jokes will have to be about people because that’s the most interesting topic.”

Steve Harvey was criticised last month for asking Miss Universe winner Harnaaz Sandhu to do an animal impersonation on stage instead of discussing her accomplishments.

Harvey revealed that if he comes back to the comedy scene, he will have to wait until he’s “done”. “And I’m not done,” he added.

“I want to do one more,” he said. “I’ll probably have to call it ‘This Is It’.”

Last month, Harvey faced criticism for asking Miss Universe winner Harnaaz Sandhu from India to do an animal impersonation on stage instead of discussing her accomplishments.

Written by: Ayomide Ayodele

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