Gillis, who is white, tweeted that he was “happy to apologize to anyone who’s actually offended by anything I’ve said.”
Freelance comedy reporter Seth Simons posted footage Thursday containing offensive language in which Gillis mocks Chinese people, calling them “chinks,” and says it bothers him when Asian people try to learn English. In the video, Gillis calls his digs “nice racism, good racism.”
On Twitter Thursday, the comedian described himself as a “comedian who pushes boundaries,” conceding: “I sometimes miss.” His “intention,” Gillis added, is “never to hurt anyone but I am trying to be the best comedian I can be and sometimes that requires risks.”
Twitter users were incredulous that Gillis would consider his run-of-the-mill mockery boundary-pushing. Responses to his tweet Thursday were harsh.
all these other white people telling a white person that his blatant racism and usage of racial slurs is fine bc “comedy”
— jhaunay-amanie (@wrightmywayout) September 13, 2019
Being racist isn’t comedy or pushing the envelope.
— Black Cherry Nerd (@cherry_LA) September 13, 2019
Using Chinese racial slurs isn’t pushing comedic boundaries you melon.
I mean yikes dude this statement alone just trashed any chance of salvaging yourself.
— David Holmes (@RReplicant) September 13, 2019
I think you’re right. Mocking Chinese food, accents, and culture pushes so many boundaries! You have revolutionized the art of comedy. The creativity and genius that you showed by bringing up tired stereotypes with charisma that is even more tired was amazing.
— Sarah Tonin (@BassedInShow) September 13, 2019
How highly original you are to be saying the same racist and stereotypical BS that your people spewed out for so long!
I am soooooooo impressed funny man!
— Not The Same Asian ❄️ (@geesubay) September 13, 2019
There is a huge difference between a joke that doesn’t land and a joke that’s racist. You should know this, and should have known better.
— Jesse ‘Perpetually Tired’ Jordan (@JesseNeon) September 13, 2019