Comedian and radio host D.L. Hughley has responded to the backlash and criticism he’s faced in the wake of his comments regarding actor Columbus Short and Short’s estranged wife, Tanee McCall-Short. The couple has been embroiled in domestic abuse allegations made by Mrs. McCall-Short against her husband, and Hughley made disparaging comments about her on his radio show this past week.
After releasing a statement offering apologies to McCall-Short, Hughley spoke about the situation on his nationally syndicated radio show “The DL Hughley Show.”
“Columbus Short’s wife came up and she is alleging that he had hit her with a wine bottle and assaulted her with a knife,” Hughley stated. “I quickly jumped to Columbus Short’s defense, and I put my mouth, my, my, if this were a joke, or if I had a done a joke that people got offended by I can honestly say I wouldn’t be apologizing. I don’t think humor, as subjective— sometime as cutting that it can be, I think that’s something, that’s where I draw a line, I won’t apologize for that.
“What I will apologize for is [opening] my mouth on a woman who was victimized by a man who I know, and before I knew the facts, or before I knew the severity or before I knew much of anything about it,” he added. “And so Tanee McCall-Short, I basically said that she was probably a gold digger and I had no idea of the severity of what was going on. I quickly … my, my, my sole apology is that I put my mouth on a woman, who was in fact being victimized, and that it came off as me silencing victims. Which, you know, that you were brutalized once and then I do it again. And so I am not in the habit of apologizing for things I don’t mean. I’m not in the habit of saying things that I don’t mean. That was a comment I made, and putting my mouth on that woman was something I sincerely apologize for.
“So I don’t condone violence. I’ve been married to a woman for 30 years I can honestly say I’ve never physically abused anyone — well, men, but they deserved it. And I’ve never encouraged a woman to be silent deliberately about abuse. So if it came off that way, I have to apologize. I don’t know that you can encourage many women to be silent about much, but I want them to be silent in general, but just not about abuse.”
Despite his “I want them to be silent in general” statement, Hughley went on to state that he wants women to speak up when they have been brutalized.
“I want them to have, I certainly want them to have a voice when somebody victimizes them,” he said. “And as I said several times on that show, I think that anybody who victimizes anybody should be prosecuted to the fullest [extent] of the law.”