MSNBC host: Rupert Murdoch is “financing vigilantism”

Lawrence O'Donnell: It's “a conscious business decision made by Rupert Murdoch and his son that this is what they want to tell America”

Video file

Citation From the August 26, 2020, edition of MSNBC's Decision 2020: Republican National Convention

BRIAN WILLIAMS (ANCHOR): Lawrence O'Donnell, interesting conversation tonight on social media by a gentleman, a veteran, who believes we've become too militarized generally as a society. We're all camoed up and to no one's surprise we've had two basically endless, generation-long wars in this country. A lot of people believe that they're not fully dressed until they've accessorized with an AR. Last night, following this convention that featured a speaker in the news for brandishing an AR in front of his home in St. Louis, last night a young and apparently troubled 17-year-old grabbed his AR to go to Kenosha. He is now charged with two murders. Tonight, here is what I want to play you from Fox News, Tucker Carlson took on this topic.


TUCKER CARLSON (FOX NEWS HOST): People in charge from the governor of Wisconsin on down refused to enforce the law. They stood back and they watched Kenosha burn. So are we really surprised that looting and arson accelerated to murder? How shocked are we that 17-year-olds with rifles decided they had to maintain order when no one else would? 


WILLIAMS: Lawrence O'Donnell, your thoughts?

LAWRENCE O'DONNELL (MSNBC HOST): Well, that is Rupert Murdoch financing vigilantism. This is a conscious business decision made by Rupert Murdoch and his son that this is what they want to tell America. Of course, there was a very big police presence out there when that 17-year-old went out there. In fact, the 17-year-old was given a water bottle by police, some of whom considered it to be helpful to have these vigilantes out there in the streets doing this. It does seem, as we sit here tonight, like an inevitable outgrowth of what's been happening with Trump rhetoric, with the concept of open carry and “bring my rifle to every public demonstration," and there you see him. There you see this 17-year-old just firing away right there, and I'm supposed to talk over this as if it's a normal piece of video to run under cable news dialogue. A kid. A misguided kid who is shooting other people with the active encouragement of the Fox propaganda channel.