Fox News personality Tucker Carlson had a simple message on the Tuesday evening broadcast of his program: white supremacy, in his mind, is just another left-wing conspiracy theory.
“The whole thing is a lie,” Carlson said.
Fear’s over white supremacy are a “conspiracy theory used to divide the country and keep a hold on power,” Carlson added, per reporting from Haaretz. He also compared it to the Russia investigation conducted by the FBI under the direction of special counsel Robert Mueller.
Carlson stated, without providing data or evidence, that the “combined membership of every white supremacist organization in this country would be able to fit inside a college football stadium.”
Carlson’s comments come after several days of a national debate in the wake of two mass shootings over the weekend. In at least one of those shootings, the assailant reportedly held far-right extremist viewpoints, including stating his belief that there was a “Hispanic invasion of Texas” entering from Mexico, the Washington Post reported.
Tucker Carlson: White supremacy is "actually not a real problem in America." Calling white supremacy and issue is "a hoax" and "a conspiracy theory used to divide the country" pic.twitter.com/ydzmJ0L7UI
— Andrew Lawrence (@ndrew_lawrence) August 7, 2019
In separate reporting from the Washington Post, the notion offered by Carlson seems to be contradicted, as it noted that violence tied to far-right extremism in the U.S. over the years, including by white supremacists, has equaled the combined total number of Americans killed by ISIS and the number who perished on September 11, 2011.
Indeed, further reporting from Vox detailed numerous events that entailed white supremacy, including (but by no means limited to):
- a mass shooting at a black church in Charleston, South Carolina, in 2015;
- a 2017 car attack by a white supremacist at the Unite the Right rally in Charlottesville, Virginia;
- a 2018 shooting at a synagogue in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania;
- and the El Paso, Texas, shooting that occurred over the weekend.
White supremacy is a problem that FBI Director Chris Wray has also noted in statements before Congress. “A majority of the domestic terrorism cases that we’ve investigated are motivated by some version of what you might call white supremacist violence,” Wray said earlier this year.