Radio host Anthony Cumia has been fired from his show, "Opie and Anthony" on Sirius XM; the latest entertainment personality to be punished for his behavior on social media. Cumia hosts the show along with Gregg "Opie" Hughes and comedian Jim Norton. This year, Opie and Anthony celebrated twenty years of broadcasting together.
Sirius decided to cave and fire me. Welcome to bizarro world. Fired for shit that wasn't even on the air & wasn't illegal. So, who's next?— Anthony Cumia (@AnthonyCumia) July 4, 2014
The firing comes after Cumia went on a Twitter rant, using profane language and making derogatory remarks about an African American woman who assaulted him in Times Square. Cumia was taking a photograph of the Square, and the woman believed she was the subject of his photographs.
The unidentified woman allegedly hit Cumia more than five times while calling him a "white motherfucker." Cumia took a photo of the woman moments before she hit him, then posted it to Twitter with a profanity laced tweet.
At the time, neither Cumia nor the woman involved reached out to police officers. After the incident, Cumia sent a number of tweets, calling the woman a "cunt" and a "savage."
Sirius XM publicly offered details of the firing today, issuing this statement to their investors earlier this afternoon:
Opie and Anthony are known for a radio bit called "The Apology Clock," in which they try to go ten days without a celebrity or member of the media issuing a public apology. Opie and Anthony fans began deliberating and even placing bets on whether or not Cumia would apologize to keep his job, however, Cumia was let go almost immediately after the incident through an email. Cumia has clarified that he was not sorry, and would not be apologizing.
Much of Cumia's on-air personality involves racial commentary. He also frequently discusses the conservative movement in America, including his role as a gun owner in New York state, which has very strict gun regulations. Many Opie and Anthony fans were particularly fond of this commentary, and are now canceling their subscriptions to Sirius XM en masse.
Other members of the show, Jim Norton and Opie Hughes, have not yet spoken on the matter. The show's contract with Sirius XM expires in October. Considering Hughes' and Norton's demonstrated loyalty to Cumia in the past (they have gone through several firings and fines for their shocking commentary) they are likely to leave Sirius at the end of contract.
In the meantime, Cumia plans to continue his radio career through a show he personally runs, "Live from the Compound." Sirius XM has declined to comment on the matter. Cumia did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.
We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to the editor or write to firstname.lastname@example.org.