Following a series of angry tweets that Sirius XM radio deemed racist from Opie and Anthony radio star Anthony Cumia, the radio broadcasting company fired the shock jock which prompted fans to cancel their subscriptions. Cumia stated that he was assaulted by a black woman who was angry that the radio host took a picture of her in Times Square. Cumia asserted that he was simply taking pictures of the scenery and the woman began making threats and assaulting him.
The incident prompted Cumia to produce a series of inflammatory tweets which insulted the woman and called her such things as “a savage.” Sirius XM radio said the fired the popular DJ because his comments where “abhorrent” and inconsistent with what the company represents.
After his firing, Cumia tweeted that his employers caved in and described his surroundings as a bizarro world: a place where he is fired for something that didn’t even happen on the air, or on company time. Cumia asserted that he has options, and a large fanbase, so this isn’t the last the world will see of him.
Sirius XM radio subscribers who are loyal fans to Opie and Anthony (O&A), responded to the firing by posting tweets of their cancelled subscription confirmation pages under the hashtags #IStandWithAnthony and #CancelSiriusXM. Angry Opie and Anthony fans stated that the way the satellite radio provider handled the issue was ridiculous, and that the company refusing to stand by its talent is a prime example of what Opie and Anthony advocated against.
Sirius XM Radio has offered no response to the fans cancelling their subscription in retaliation to O&A’s Anthony Cumia’s firing. The show had a large following and frequently had notable entertainers and comedians guest star for free, including Louis CK, Patrice O’neal, Greg Giraldo, George Carlin, Quentin Tarantino, Kevin Pollak, Robert Kelly, William Shatner, Dane Cook, Seth Rogen, Gary Oldman, Bill Burr, Amy Schumer, Jonah Hill, Judd Apatow, Andrew “Dice” Clay, Joe Derosa, Nick Dipaolo and Ozzy Osbourne.
Sirius XM Radio’s, and Anthony Cumia’s partners, Jim Norton and Gregg “Opie” Hughes have not commented on the company’s firing of their friend and cohort or the fans’ cancelled subscriptions, aside from a tweet from Hughes asking his followers if he “missed anything” while he was out of town. For years, the three radio personalities have defended public figures who have been fired for things they have said that the public found unsavory. They always took the position that progress must be achieved by a nation of people being honest and not scapegoating known figures as a “shameful” excuse for actually solving world problems.
After firings from other radio stations for previous stunts, the radio show found its home on Sirius XM radio, where they were free to use whatever language they wanted. The Opie and Anthony show has also been a proponent of honesty in the world of fame, and accused the apologies given by celebrities who were subject of scandals as “groveling” in an effort to keep their job in a world that is eager to fire someone for speaking honestly about their opinions. Cumia asserted that he would not be offering an apology of any sort to Sirius XM radio, or the public, although he has erased a lot of his tweets.
By Andres Loubriel