ViacomCBS has just severed ties with Nick Cannon (America’s Got Talent) after he made anti-Semitic comments in his podcast Cannon’s Class on YouTube, according to Stereogum. In the video posted on June 30, Cannon discussed race with former Public Enemy member Richard “Professor Griff” Griffin. Griffin himself was kicked out of Public Enemy in 1989 for his own anti-semitic comments.
During the interview, Cannon reportedly said Black people are the “true Hebrews” and addressed anti-Semitic conspiracy theories revolving around the Rothschild family.
“It’s never hate speech, you can’t be anti-Semitic when we are the Semitic people,” Cannon said in his YouTube video. “When we are the same people who they want to be. That’s our birthright. We are the true Hebrews.”
According to a statement to TV Line on the matter, a spokesperson of ViacomCBS said, “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.”
He took to Facebook and Twitter to comment on the backlash he received.
Anyone who knows me knows that I have no hate in my heart nor malice intentions. I do not condone hate speech nor the…
Cannon had a long-running relationship with Viacom since his days on Nickelodeon in the 90s. He also hosted the sketch comedy show Wild ‘n Out on MTV and VH1 since 2015. Most recently, he’s the current host of Fox’s The Masked Singer and previously hosted NBC’s America’s Got Talent from 2009 to 2016.