Fox Refuses to Cancel Nick Cannon Following Anti-Semitic Comments

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Nick Cannon at the Time 100 Gala in 2010. Photo Credit: David Shankbone

Yesterday, DMN was first to report that ViacomCBS had fired Nick Cannon from Wild ‘N Out following antisemitic comments on a June 30th episode of Cannon’s Class. Cannon responded with a roughly 1,500-word statement, as well as more recent and specific apologies to the Jewish community, and Fox has indicated that they will keep him on as the host of The Masked Singer.

Fox officials cited the “remorseful” nature of the apology offered by Nick Cannon in explaining their decision to continue working with him. Additionally, as part of the same message, Fox higher-ups emphasized that Cannon has “quickly taken steps to educate himself and make amends.” The 39-year-old has hosted Fox’s hit The Masked Singer program since its January 2019 debut.

Cannon posted the first of the aforementioned apologies to the Jewish community yesterday evening. In the short and concise text, the San Diego, California, native struck a more immediately contrite tone, writing, in part: “I extend my deepest and most sincere apologies to my Jewish sisters and brothers for the hurtful and divisive words that came out of my mouth during my interview with Richard Griffin.”

A second message – published 40 minutes after the latter – stated that Cannon had spoken with Rabbi Abraham Cooper, who directs the Simon Wiesenthal Center’s Global Social Action Agenda. Here, Cannon made a point of expressly addressing his Cannon’s Class comments, emphasizing: “On my podcast I used words and referenced literature I assumed to be factual to uplift my community, but instead turned out to be hateful propaganda and stereotypical rhetoric that pained another community.”

Lastly, in a third message, posted to Facebook just hours ago, Nick Cannon revealed that he will step away from his radio show, Power 106’s Nick Cannon Mornings, to further his education (presumably concerning the issues at the core of the controversy) and to “establish an action plan towards real, impactful change and advocacy aimed at bringing people together.” Cannon didn’t disclose a timetable for his return to the radio program, but thanked “the Rabbis, community leaders and institutions who have reached out to me to help enlighten me.”

A number of fans are voicing support for Cannon on social media, and retired Miami Heat veteran Dwayne Wade tweeted – and quickly deleted – a message in encouragement of the individual last night. Wade has since walked back and clarified his stance. 50 Cent, for his part, has weighed in by trolling Cannon with a fake advert for a “new show” entitled “Out Wild.”

At the time of this writing, ViacomCBS hadn’t publicly responded to Nick Cannon’s updated apologies. Yesterday, the network refuted several allegations that the Wild ‘N Out creator made in the above-cited 1,500-word statement, including that he attempted to contact ViacomCBS chair Sheri Redstone to discuss the matter.

More as this develops.

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