Nick Cannon on 'growth' since 2020 antisemitic remarks, 'educational' podcast with ADL CEO
Nick Cannon has come a long way since his 2020 antisemitic comments spurred outrage.
Cannon, 42, appeared in an interview with AllHipHop Friday where he discussed his continued "educational" journey since then.
"That process was a growth moment for me on so many levels as a man," he said.
Cannon and Anti-Defamation League CEO Jonathan Greenblatt launched the podcast "2 Hate or Not 2 Hate" in January where they discuss antisemitism through various lenses. "It’s really talking about the equation of our two communities from two different perspectives," Cannon told AllHipHop.
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"We voice our side, or the perspective as a Black man, and then he voices his side from a Jewish man," the "Masked Singer" host said. "Just even that alone is helpful and educational for both communities."
Cannon added, "We can sit up here and be enraged, but if we don’t engage, what are we really doing, if we can’t even learn from one another? And clearly, we all know the issues, we all know the tropes, we all know the stereotypes."
The podcast's goal is "bringing people closer together," Cannon says. "Ultimately, nobody’s monolithic, but we’re all one organism that allows this thing to keep pumping."
In July 2020, Cannon had a controversial discussion on his "Cannon’s Class" podcast with Richard "Professor Griff" Griffin. During the discussion, Cannon promoted antisemitic conspiracy theories and praised Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan.
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ViacomCBS immediately fired Cannon and condemned his remarks, saying it "denounces all forms" of antisemitism Cannon initially refused to apologize and demanded ownership of his ViacomCBS-owned show "Wild 'N Out." Two days later, Cannon apologized on Twitter.
Cannon later began inviting rabbis and Jewish leaders onto the same radio show where he originally made the comments. One rabbi he invited, Rabbi Abraham Cooper, immediately spoke out against Cannon after the controversy. In a tweet, he wrote that the original interview was for anyone seeking a Ph.D. in "jew-hatred." Since then, the two have made amends and have had conversations to educate the "Masked Singer" host.
ViacomCBS restored its contract with Cannon in February 2021 and the company announced the VH1 sketch-comedy series "Wild 'N Out" would resume production with Cannon as host. In a statement to USA TODAY at the time, MTV Entertainment Group said Cannon has "taken responsibility for his comments" and "worked to educate himself" through conversations with Jewish leaders.
"I'm not seeking forgiveness, I'm seeking growth," Cannon told ABC anchor Linsey Davis on "Soul of a Nation" in March 2021.
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This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Nick Cannon says antisemitic comments in 2020 were a 'growth moment'