Fox News’ biggest star, Tucker Carlson, has repeatedly promoted the white supremacist “great replacement” theory with the blessings of Fox Corp. executives Lachlan and Rupert Murdoch. Carlson not only advocates for the white nationalist talking point, but routinely calls on his audience to take action against those he purports are trying to “replace” white Americans.
Carlson frequently works to instill fear in his audience by asserting that Democrats will turn to violence or coercion against dissidents, a trope often used by fascists. The idea here seems to be turning his audience into an angry mob, as he repeatedly asserts that viewers may need to take the law into their own hands for their own safety. By consistently repeating this rhetoric, Carlson undoubtedly pushes some viewers to real-world violence.
Carlson has spent the last year embracing and mainstreaming white nationalist talking points, including the “great replacement” theory, while receiving praise from former Ku Klux Klan leader David Duke and extremist Infowars host Alex Jones, among other white nationalists.
Over the weekend, a racially motivated and deadly mass shooting at a Buffalo, New York, supermarket ended with 10 fatalities. The suspect in the mass shooting allegedly wrote a hateful manifesto that repeatedly cited the “great replacement” theory as a motive for violence against Black people. The manifesto also included antisemitic and other racist language throughout.
The Buffalo shooting was not the first to be inspired by the great replacement and other white nationalist theories. A 2019 mosque shooting in Christchurch, New Zealand, was motivated by the idea of a “white genocide.” Some of the 2017 “Unite the Right” rallygoers in Charlottesville, North Carolina, were also galvanized by the idea.
We can thank Tucker Carlson for terrorizing his audiences with this racist idea — and telling them to take action.