Stephen Colbert devoted an entire show to the #CancelColbert controversy on Monday night in an attempt to put to rest questions about whether or not he is racist. The controversy began last week when the official Colbert Report Twitter account tweeted out a message that read, “I am willing to show #Asian community I care by introducing the Ching-Chong Ding-Dong Foundation for Sensitivity to Orientals or Whatever.”
The tweet was in reference to a skit on the show, but as we’ve seen with Twitter in the past, 144 characters is usually not enough space to explain yourself well. So, the #CancelColbert hashtag began trending, and Colbert addressed the controversy on his own Twitter account.
Apparently that wasn’t enough. The late-night comedy host used his entire 30-minute time slot on Monday night to discussing the issue, explaining, “To recap: A web editor I’ve never met posts a tweet in my name on an account I don’t control, outrages a hashtag activist, and the news media get 72 hours of content. The system worked.”
Stephen Colbert went on to say, “Who would have thought a means of communication limited to 140 characters would ever create misunderstandings?” The comedian then went on to insist that he isn’t racist. He insisted, “I don’t even see race. Not even my own. People tell me I’m white, and I believe them because I just devoted six minutes to explaining how I’m not a racist. And that is about the whitest thing you can do.”
Colbert then brought on Twitter co-founder Biz Stone as his guest and together they decimated the @ColbertReport account that sent out the tweet. It appears that this wasn’t pretend either, as the account was really deleted.
At the end of the show about the #CancelColbert controversy, Stephen Colbert quipped, “I just pray that no one ever tweets about the time I said Rosa Parks was overrated [or] Hitler had some good ideas … ’cause man, that sounds pretty bad out of context.” You can check out the full episode here.