Radio broadcaster fired for calling Sen. Kamala Harris ‘colored’

WTAM 1100 wrote in a statement that Cornell no longer works at the station.

Kyle Cornell (via Social Media) and Sen. Kamala Harris (Win McNamee/Getty Images)

Kyle Cornell, a 26-year-old broadcaster at WTAM 1100 Cleveland, called Joe Biden‘s vice presidental running mate Sen. Kamala Harris the “first colored vice presidential candidate.”

The language Cornell used was considered offensive by many listeners, and on Wednesday night, it was met with backlash by social media users.

READ MORE: Newsweek apologizes for Kamala Harris birtherism op-ed

“The U.S. officially has its first colored vice presidential candidate. More coming up after the game on Newsradio WTAM 1100 Cleveland,” Cornell said.

The following next day, WTAM 1100 wrote in a statement that Cornell no longer works at the station.

“We are aware of the reference made on WTAM by Kyle Cornell,” said Ray Davis, the station’s program and promotions director, in a statement.

“We take this matter very seriously and addressed it immediately,” the statement continued. “‘The term used is extremely offensive and does not align with our station’s core values and commitment to the communities we serve. He is no longer with WTAM.’

After being ‘canceled’ on social media, Cornell apologized for “making a judgment in error,” according to The DailyMail.

“I wasn’t trying to be malicious or in any way decimate the character or anything like that,” Cornell said, according to The DailyMail. “That was never the goal. And for that, I am truly sorry.”

READ MORE: Black radio host exits BBC after station allows reporter to use n-word in a news report

“For the station of WTAM too, I feel awful for putting them through what they’ve had to go through over the past 24 hours,” Cornell continued.

Some social media users believe Cornell’s termination went too far, saying the word “colored” accurately describes Harris rather than being a word used to indicate racial bias.

As theGrio previously reported, Harris born to an Indian mother and Jamaican father who met during the civil rights era.

Have you subscribed to theGrio’s podcast “Dear Culture”? Download our newest episodes now!