Hasan Minhaj has been caught stretching the truth in a handful of stories he’s told in his stand-up comedy — and his response to this revelation is … eh, it’s not a big deal, guys.
The comic — famous from ‘The Daily Show’ — got called out in a New Yorker piece … which got him to admit that he’d fabricated much of the details to several bits he’d done on stage over the years … almost all of which played up racism and bigotry over his Muslim heritage.
One such anecdote that was embellished is about his daughter … and how he had to rush her to the hospital after an envelope with white powder was sent to his house. As it turns out, all the daughter stuff was made up — as he revealed when pressed by the New Yorker.
Other stories he exaggerated or flat-out lied about included one of him getting turned down for a school dance due to his race — the woman in question says this wasn’t the case in the slightest — and another about how an FBI informant infiltrated his community mosque. In both instances, there appears to be little truth to the substance of the stories.
Minhaj said this to the New Yorker, “My comedy Arnold Palmer is seventy per cent emotional truth — this happened — and then thirty per cent hyperbole, exaggeration, fiction.” After being pressed further by other media, he released a lengthier statement, which is interesting.
He says … “All my standup stories are based on events that happened to me. Yes, I was rejected from going to prom because of my race. Yes, a letter with powder was sent to my apartment that almost harmed my daughter. Yes, I had an interaction with law enforcement during the war on terror. Yes, I had varicocele repair surgery, so we could get pregnant. Yes, I roasted Jared Kushner to his face. I use the tools of standup comedy — hyperbole, changing names and locations, and compressing timelines to tell entertaining stories.”
HM adds, “You wouldn’t go to a Haunted House and say ‘Why are these people lying to me?’ The point is the ride. Standup is the same.”