The Anti-Defamation League’s CEO Jonathan Greenblatt condemned Tucker Carlson for defending “replacement theory” on his show Thursday and said that it’s time for the Fox News host to be taken off the network.
“Tucker must go,” Greenblatt wrote on Twitter. He also fired off a letter to Fox News Media CEO Suzanne Scott, in which he wrote that Carlson’s “full-on embrace of the white supremacist replacement theory on yesterday’s show and his repeated allusions to racist themes in past segments are a bridge too far.”
.@TuckerCarlson: “replacement theory” is a white supremacist tenet that the white race is in danger by a rising tide of non-whites.
It is antisemitic, racist and toxic. It has informed the ideology of mass shooters in El Paso, Christchurch and Pittsburgh.
Tucker must go. https://t.co/FSvgNfR1KO
— Jonathan Greenblatt (@JGreenblattADL) April 9, 2021
The white replacement theory is a conspiracy theory on the far right and among white nationalists that elites are plotting to replace whites with immigrants. When white nationalists descended on Charlottesville in 2017, some of the most chilling images were of demonstrators carrying torches and chanting, “Jews will not replace us.”
A Fox News spokesperson would not comment, but pointed out that Carlson said on his show that he was not describing white replacement theory and that it was a voting-rights question.
Carlson typically has responded to such a furor on his show. It’s also unlikely that the network would boot Carlson from its schedule. In March, it was the top show among cable news networks, with an average of 3.23 million viewers, and earlier this month he launched a new show for Fox Nation, Fox News’ subscription streaming service.
In the segment (watch it below), Carlson was speaking with Mark Steyn. “I know that the left and all the little gatekeepers on Twitter become literally hysterical if you use the term ‘replacement,’ if you suggest that the Democratic Party is trying to ‘replace’ the current electorate, the voters now casting ballots, with new people, more obedient voters from the Third World,” Carlson, said, “But they become hysterical because that’s what’s happening, actually. Let’s just say it: That’s true.”
Carlson added that “on a basic level, it is a voting rights question. One person equals one vote. If you change the population, you dilute the political power of the people who live there. So every time they import a new voter, I become disenfranchised as a current voter. So I don’t understand what we don’t understand ’cause, I mean, everyone wants to make a racial issue out of it. Ooh, you know, the white replacement theory? No, no, no. This is a voting-rights question. I have less political power because they are importing a brand-new electorate. Why should I sit back and take that? The power that I have as an American guaranteed at birth is one man, one vote, and they are diluting it. No, they are not allowed to do that. Why are we putting up with this?”
But in his letter to Scott, Greenblatt wrote, “While couching his argument in terms of what he described as the Democratic Party attempting to replace traditional voters with immigrants from third-world countries, Carlson’s rhetoric was not just a dog whistle to racists – it was a bullhorn.”
He added, “Make no mistake: this is dangerous stuff. The ‘great replacement theory’ is a classic white supremacist trope that undergirds the modern white supremacist movement in America. It is a concept that is discussed almost daily in online racist fever swamps. It is a notion that fueled the hateful chants of “Jews will not replace us!” in Charlottesville in 2017. And it has lit the fuse in explosive hate crimes, most notably the hate-motivated mass shooting attacks in Pittsburgh, Poway and El Paso, as well as in Christchurch, New Zealand.”
Media Matters for America, a progressive watchdog organization, said every Fox News advertiser “bears responsibility for the beaming of this vile rhetoric to millions of people, whether they run their commercials on Carlson’s show or not.” Washington Post columnist Max Boot called out Fox Corp. leadership, noting that Rupert and Lachlan Murdoch are immigrants, as well as Viet Dinh, a top executive.
“How do they feel about Carlson’s odious aspersions on Americans who weren’t born here? Are they okay with profiting from what Carlson is saying?” Boot wrote.
Coming to Carlson’s defense was J.D. Vance, the author of Hillbilly Elegy. who reportedly is considering a bid for the Senate in Ohio.
“Tucker Carlson is the only powerful figure who consistently challenges elite dogma — on both cultural and economic questions,” Vance wrote. “That is why they try to destroy him. Don’t fall for it this time, or any other.”
Subscribe to Deadline Breaking News Alerts and keep your inbox happy.