A number of “Opie and Anthony” fans have lashed out at SiriusXM after the satellite radio company fired Anthony Cumia on July 3 for racist comments he tweeted earlier in the week.
Cumia’s supporters have launched a Twitter campaign, using the hashtag #CancelSiriusXM, to encourage the show’s listeners to cancel their SiriusXM subscriptions. Some fans have replaced their Twitter avatars with an image showing the iconic drawing of Argentine revolutionary and Cuban Revolution figure Che Guevara, but with Cumia’s face superimposed on it.
SiriusXM Fires ‘Opie & Anthony’ Host Over ‘Racially-Charged’ Tweets
Fans have also used the hashtags #JusticeForAnt and #StandWithAnt in tweets. A petition on Change.org to reinstate Cumia has garnered roughly 5,000 signatures, and supporters plan to protest outside of SiriusXM’s New York City offices on July 7.
Several well-known comedians have tweeted their support for Cumia. “Opie and Anthony” co-host Jim Norton wrote on July 3: “@AnthonyCumia is physically assaulted and for some reason, the story is about him reacting angrily on Twitter?”
Other comedians were in direct opposition to the firing. Colin Quinn tweeted: “Sirius shouldn’t have fired him. #facts.” And Ralphie May tweeted: “Anyone should be able to say as they will especially on Twitter without losing their job. #standwithant.”
The Hollywood Reporter has reached out to SiriusXM for comment about the fan reaction and is awaiting response. Earlier in the week, Cumia alleged on Twitter that an African-American woman had attacked him in NYC. The radio host made numerous racist remarks and used slurs in the tirade, including calling her a “lucky savage” and saying that he hopes “a home boy beats her to death.”
Here is a smattering of tweets that Cumia’s fans have posted:
RT if you’re going to be outside for this Monday morning http://t.co/1Jra7Jqkbz #StandWithAnt #JusticeForAnt #CancelSiriusXM
— Stop Apologizing USA (@GrovelingUSA) July 6, 2014
Subscriber since 2002 – 2 radios and an online account – bye @SIRIUSXM #CancelSiriusXM
— Kevin Meyer (@kevinam9) July 6, 2014
I have always supported the @OandAshow, since ’98, & have seen it all 4 them, but, how #SiriusXM handled this was ABOMINABLE #CancelSiriusXM
— William Armenta (@AUDIOWILL) July 5, 2014
- This article originally appeared in THR.com.