ViacomCBS Fires Nick Cannon Over Anti-Semitic Comments

The actor, musician, and media personality Nick Cannon has been hosting the sketch comedy and improv game show Wild ‘N Out on MTV and VH1 since 2005. That’s over now. ViacomCBS, the networks’ parent company, has terminated its relationship with Cannon after he expressed anti-semitic comments and conspiracy theories on his Cannon’s Class podcast and YouTube series.

On the episode in question, Cannon was speaking with Professor Griff, who was kicked out of Public Enemy in 1989 for making comments such as “Jews are responsible for the majority of wickedness that goes on across the globe.” During the interview, Cannon reportedly articulated anti-semitic conspiracy theories, referencing “the Rothschilds, centralized banking, the 13 families, the bloodlines that control everything even outside of America” and calling Black people “the true Hebrews.” He told Griff, “The Semitic people are Black people. You can’t be anti-Semitic when we are the Semitic people. When we are the same people they want to be. That’s our birthright.” As NME points out, in 2013, Cannon caught flack for appearing in a video promoting the “Millions For Trayvon” march sponsored by the New Black Panther Party, dubbed by the Anti-Defamation League as “the nation’s largest anti-Semitic and racist Black militant group.”

Cannon commented on the backlash to that interview Monday in a statement on his social media accounts:

Anyone who knows me knows that I have no hate in my heart nor malice intentions. I do not condone hate speech nor the spread of hateful rhetoric. We are living in a time when it is more important than ever to promote unity and understanding.

The Black and Jewish communities have both faced enormous hatred, oppression persecution and prejudice for thousands of years and in many ways have and will continue to work together to overcome these obstacles.

When you look at The Media, and other sectors in our nation’s history, African Americans and The people of the Jewish community have partnered to create some of the best, most revolutionary work we know today.

I am an advocate for people’s voices to be heard openly, fairly and candidly. In today’s conversation about anti-racism and social justice, I think we all – including myself – must continue educating one another and embrace uncomfortable conversations – it’s the only way we ALL get better. I encourage more healthy dialogue and welcome any experts, clergy, or spokespersons to any of my platforms to hold me accountable and correct me in any statement that I’ve made that has been projected as negative. Until then, I hold myself accountable for this moment and take full responsibility because My intentions are only to show that as a beautiful human species we have way more commonalities than differences, So let’s embrace those as well as each other. We All Family!🙏🏾

ViacomCBS apparently did not find this satisfactory because they’ve cut ties with Cannon, who also hosts The Masked Singer on Fox. ViacomCBS offered this statement to TV Line:

ViacomCBS condemns bigotry of any kind and we categorically denounce all forms of anti-Semitism. We have spoken to Nick Cannon about an episode of his podcast Cannon’s Class on YouTube, which promoted hateful speech and spread anti-Semitic conspiracy theories. While we support ongoing education and dialogue in the fight against bigotry, we are deeply troubled that Nick has failed to acknowledge or apologize for perpetuating anti-Semitism, and we are terminating our relationship with him. We are committed to doing better in our response to incidents of anti-Semitism, racism, and bigotry. ViacomCBS will have further announcements on our efforts to combat hate of all kinds.

So, anybody listened to Kendrick Lamar’s DAMN. lately?