'Opie and Anthony' Hosts Respond to Backlash Following Racist Twitter Tirade
Anthony Cumia has been tweeting about fans canceling Sirius subscriptions, while his former co-host Gregg "Opie" Hughes will be back on the radio next week to "figure this out."
Opie and Anthony's hosts had very different responses to the recent racist scandal that tore apart their SiriusXM radio show.
After going on a tirade last week when he claimed that a woman assaulted him in New York City, Anthony Cumia was fired by the satellite-radio company July 3 but was back on Twitter on Monday talking about fans canceling their subscriptions.
"My buddy is canceling his Sirius service in front of me right now. They offered free service. Lol. Just to keep the sub #s there. Unreal," wrote the controversial DJ after his followers had formed a campaign, using the hashtag #CancelSiriusXM, to encourage the show's listeners to revolt.
My buddy is canceling his Sirius service in front of me right now. They offered free service. Lol. Just to keep the sub #s there. Unreal.— Anthony Cumia (@AnthonyCumia) July 7, 2014
Stand-up comic and Fox Sports Radio host Jay Mohr also supported Cumia, claiming the comments were made in his "free time."
Sad that @AnthonyCumia was fired for what he said in his free time by a company that plays pornography on its corporate time...— Jay Mohr (@jaymohr37) July 7, 2014
Meanwhile, longtime partner Gregg "Opie" Hughes wrote that he was "devastated" by the outcome of 53-year-old Cumia's lengthy rant, which included calling a woman he claims punched him in Times Square on July 1 "an animal bitch" and that he hoped she was "shot and killed."
"Had a long talk with @SiriusXM me and @JimNorton will be back on the radio next Monday to start to figure this out," Hughes wrote, referring to co-host and comedian Jim Norton.
— opie radio (@OpieRadio) July 7, 2014
While Hughes and Norton meet with SiriusXM on Tuesday to discuss the future of the show, Cumia still claims that his comments weren't racist.
"animal & savage" were directed at people, like the one who attacked, who resort instantly to violence. It was far from a generalization.— Anthony Cumia (@AnthonyCumia) July 7, 2014
He also tweeted that he is already working on his next project, which will be a compound show.
Really appreciate all the support. Best fans ever. Keep giving them hell. I'll be doing a Compound show asap to lay out the future. Thanks!— Anthony Cumia (@AnthonyCumia) July 7, 2014
Last week's scandal wasn't the first time Opie and Anthony, which began in 1995, has faced controversy. The show has been fined by the FCC twice. The first fine, for $21,000, covered broadcasts from 2000-01, which included a segment in which a 17-year-old girl was instructed to take off her panties and rub a telephone across her pubic area, as well as a song called "I'm Horny for Little Girls."
A second 2004 fine saw Viacom — parent company of CBS Radio/Infinity-owned stations — pay $3.5 million to cancel all pending indecency claims against the show. At issue was a Sex for Sam contest, for which people were encouraged to have sex in a public place.