Trevor Noah says Joe Rogan was "using racism to be entertaining"

'The Daily Show' host is unmoved by the podcaster's latest apology video.

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Trevor Noah is unmoved by Joe Rogan’s latest apology. The comedian and host of The Daily Show dedicated a long segment on an episode this week to the top podcaster’s most recent controversy in which Rogan, on the heels of his Spotify and vaccine saga, was forced to address a viral video that compiled his use of the N-word on his podcast over the years.

“Now, I know that to most people there is no context where a white person is ever allowed to say that word, never mind publicly on a podcast,” Rogan said in his apology video earlier this week. “And I agree with that now, I haven’t said it in years. But for a long time, when I would bring the word up like if it would come up in conversation, instead of saying the N-word, I would just say the word…. For years I used it in that manner. never used it to be racist, because I’m not racist. But whenever you’re in a situation where you have to say ‘I’m not racist,’ you fucked up. And I clearly have fucked up.”

On The Daily Show Noah initially noted the importance of Rogan acknowledging his mistake, saying, “I’m glad that Rogan has gone, ‘You know what, I didn’t need to use that word all those times.’ Because people need to learn, and I’m glad that he has.” Noah, though, took issue with Rogan’s adamant stance that he was not racist, and that these clips were simply taken out of context, pointing specifically toward a story that Rogan told in which he joked about going to see Planet of the Apes in a Black neighborhood.

“We’re giggling, ‘Oh, we’re gonna go see Planet of the Apes.’ We walked into Planet of the Apes,” Rogan says in the clip. “We walked into Africa, dude. We walk in the door, and there was no white people.” While Rogan addressed that specific clip and claimed he didn’t compare Black people to apes and that it “wasn’t a racist story,” but that it sounded “terrible,” Noah pointed to the fact that Rogan himself admitted in the clip: “Planet of the Apes didn’t take place in Africa, that was a racist thing to say.”

The Daily Show host also zeroed in on Rogan’s defense that he was simply trying to be entertaining. “No, Joe, I think you were using racism to be entertaining,” Noah said. “I’m not saying you were trying to offend Black people, by the way, but you knew that offending Black people would get a laugh out of those white friends you were with.”

Rogan, meanwhile, has addressed things himself after his apology video. In a stand-up set Tuesday night in Austin, he told the crowd that the compilation video was “racist as fuck, even to me! I’m me and I’m watching it saying, ‘Stop saying it!’ I put my cursor over the video and I’m like, ‘Four more minutes?!'”

Earlier in the day, he said on his podcast that the video was a “political hit job,” but that he found it to be a “relief.” “It’s good because it makes me address some stuff that I really wish wasn’t out there,” he said.

“Over time, people will understand you,” Rogan added. “They know you. If you misstep, they know what you’re trying to do – you’re not a vicious person, you’re just trying to be funny.”