Fans have questioned the Life & Beth star several times over the years, even as far back as 2015. After she was called out in an article published by The Guardian for allegedly having a “shockingly large blind spot around race” in her stand-up, the Inside Amy Schumer alum fought back in a lengthy series of tweets.
“I am a comic,” she wrote in June 2015. “I am so glad more people are laughing at me and with me all of a sudden. I will joke about things you like, and I will joke about things you arent comfortable with. And that’s OK. Stick with me and trust I am joking.”
The Snatched star continued, “I go in and out of playing an irreverent idiot. That includes making dumb jokes involving race. I enjoy playing the girl who time to time says the dumbest thing possible, and playing with race is a thing we are not supposed to do, which is what makes it so fun for comics. … You can call it a ‘blind spot for racism’ or ‘lazy,’ but you are wrong. It is a joke and it is funny. I know that because people laugh at it.”
Schumer requested that critics “put down [their] torches,” claiming that she simply puts other people’s perspectives on race under a microscope in her work. One month later, however, she issued a more formal apology for her insensitive material, vowing to take “responsibility” in the future.
It was far from the first time Schumer was criticized for her questionable takes on race. She faced backlash in late 2016 for putting her own spin on Beyoncé‘s “Formation” video, which was applauded for centering Black women and championing female empowerment. Schumer’s interpretation of the song’s message didn’t go over well with fans.
“It was NEVER a parody,” she argued in a blog post at the time, apologizing amid the controversy. “It was just us women celebrating each other. The video Beyoncé made was so moving and I wouldn’t ever make fun of that. There is absolutely no way to. I make fun of myself a few times in the video as I do in everything I am a part of. I loved every second of working with those women to make this thing that lifted us up. If you watched it and it made you feel anything other than good, please know that was not my intention.”
The Expecting Amy personality even went so far as to claim she “had Beyoncé and Jay Z’s approval,” which is why the video was released on Tidal. “You have every right to feel however you feel about the video and me but I want you to know I’m not going anywhere,” she concluded. “Use whatever hashtag you like. My mission is to continue to work as hard as I can to empower women and make them laugh and feel better and I won’t let anything stop me. #strongertogether #alllove.”
Scroll down for a look back at Schumer’s riskiest moments through the years: