I Refuse to “Cancel” My Friend Simply Because He Hates Transgender People And Also Burned Down An Arby’s

Let’s have some compassion for the real victims — comedians who sometimes get criticized online.

Jude Ellison S. Doyle
6 min readJan 3, 2022

An unrelated photograph. Photo by Jamie Lamor Thompson on Shutterstock.

Hello! It’s me, your favorite affable, unthreatening white male comedian. You may remember me from such bits as “Star Wars — Wow,” “White Male Nerds (are Victims),” and “The Comedy Special Where I Say ‘Tranny’ A Lot While Complaining About Wokeness.” I’d prefer it if you didn’t remember that last bit, but if you do, please try to remember that special was filmed in a different era (2016).

Anyway! I guess it’s come out that I’m friends with someone who hates trans people. Crazy, right? Couldn’t have seen that coming. Also, in an unrelated coincidence, my friend turns out to be the arsonist who recently burned down the Arby’s on I-95, killing six people.

Now, knowing this, some of my fans may question our friendship. Yes, of course, I’m an LGBTQ+ ally. Yes, obviously, his beliefs in regard to transgender people and/or burning a half-dozen innocent restaurant workers to death are abhorrent. But, on the other hand, I really enjoy hanging out with him. And, until he got accused of killing all those people, I didn’t get in trouble for that, so I assumed it was no big deal.

Look, I’ve known my friend who hates transgender people for a really long time. Since high school! Who among you can honestly say that you’ve outgrown any of your friends from high school? Stinky Chad; Pete the Hamster; hot Debra from bio class; and so on, and so forth. If you’re anything like me, those are still the same people that you see every single day.

Thirty-four years I’ve known that man. THIRTY-FOUR YEARS! Now, did my friend — Dave; let’s call him Dave — always burn down fast food restaurants? I don’t think so. Did he always hate transgender people? Perhaps. You would think, given that Dave is currently famous for hating transgender people virulently, at length, and in long, public speeches, that I would have heard his views on transgender people at some point over the 34 years of our friendship. And yet, I’m drawing a blank.

Jude Ellison S. Doyle

Author of “Trainwreck” (Melville House, ‘16) and “Dead Blondes and Bad Mothers” (Melville House, ‘19). Columns published far and wide across the Internet.