Comedy Central is defending its choice to replace Jon Stewart with 31-year-old South African comedian Trevor Noah, known for his "provocative" comedy targeting Jews and "fat chicks," as host for The Daily Show.
Believing Noah has "a bright future at Comedy Central," the network released the following statement:
To judge him or his comedy based on a handful of jokes is unfair.
Some of those jokes he posted to his Twitter account in recent years were highlighted by the Associated Press:
In 2009 he wrote: "Almost bumped a Jewish kid crossing the road. He didn't look b4 crossing but I still would hav felt so bad in my german car!"
A 2012 post derides "jewish chicks." Another one from 2011 jokes about "a hot white woman."
In a post from 2011, he writes: "Oh yeah the weekend. People are gonna get drunk & think that I'm sexy!" He attributes the joke to "fat chicks everywhere."
He also slammed the United States' midsection in a 2013 tweet, writing that "When flying over the middle of America the turbulence is so bad. It's like all the ignorance is rising through the air."
But Comedy Central is excited about their new star whose multicultural heritage they praise will give Noah an appeal as "a citizen of the world" to viewers.
With the controversy surrounding his brand of humor, Noah also defended himself through social media, telling his followers:
To reduce my views to a handful of jokes that didn't land is not a true reflection of my character, nor my evolution as a comedian.
Noah said he and Stewart actually have something in common -- "We are both progressive." He then added, "[T]raveling the world I've learned that progressives, regardless of their locations, think in a global space."