Rumors stemmed from a joke that Cannon made while filming his Showtime special, Stand Up, Don't Shoot and his subsequent promotion of the show. According to his social media accounts, Cannon claims that the purpose of the special was to bring people together, not cause any sort of controversy. Cannon adds that he's loved hosting the show (he's done the duties for eight seasons), but that his "soul won't allow me to be in business with corporations that attempt to frown on freedom of speech, censor artists, and question cultural choices."
Cannon posted a long explanation on both Instagram and Facebook, saying that AGT and NBC may not be the right fit for his own talents if he's constantly being scrutinized for his own comedy.
Don't expect him to take this lightly. Cannon says that he loves entertaining and performing too much to stop — he added that he plans on striking out on his own, because, "You can't fire a [boss]."
You can read the post in full, below.
I write this from a deeply saddened and dolorous mindset. After days of deliberating over some extremely disappointing news that I was being threatened with termination by Executives because of a comedy special that was only intended to bring communities closer together, I was to be punished for a joke. This has weighed heavy on my spirit. It was brought to my attention by my "team" that NBC believed that I was in breach of contract because I had disparaged their brand. In my defense, I would ask how so? Or is this just another way to silence and control an outspoken voice who often battles the establishment. Recently many of my mentors have cautioned me that soon "The System" would come down on me because I was speaking too many truths and being to loud about it. I had no idea that it all would hit so close to home. I find myself in a dark place having to make a decision that I wish I didn't have to, but as a man, an artist, and a voice for my community I will not be silenced, controlled or treated like a piece of property. There is no amount of money worth my dignity or my integrity. I have loved hosting AMERICAS GOT TALENT for the last 8 seasons, watching talented, brave, and courageous Americans accomplish their dreams in front of millions has been nothing but a joy, and everyone has been a pleasure to work with but my soul won't allow me to be in business with corporations that attempt to frown on freedom of speech, censor artists, and question cultural choices. Not to get too detailed but this isn't the first time executives have attempted to "put me in my place" for so called unruly actions. I will not stand for it. My moral principles will easily walk away from the millions of dollars they hang over my head. It's never been about the money for me, what is difficult to walk away from is the fans, the people who love me on the show. This hurts tremendously. I felt like I was apart of the fabric of our great nation every summer, representing every culture, age, gender, and demographic. Now for the rug to be pulled from underneath me and to be publicly reprimanded and ridiculed over a joke about my own race is completely wrong... Continued on My FACEBOOK