What Happened to Tucker Carlson?

I take no pleasure in writing this, because I have been a supporter and an admirer of Tucker Carlson dating back to 2016.

I have defended him twice on these very pages.

When he took over Bill O’Reilly’s time slot on Fox News—I ensured that I practically never missed an episode.

When I was a White House intern, I had the rare privilege of sitting in on a live show. Carslon could not have been more friendly and down to earth. During commercial breaks he made sure to engage with us. He asked each of us questions about ourselves and tried to understand our philosophy—before his producer politely informed him that they were going back on the air in 10 seconds.

Watching Carlson was enlightening, informative, hilarious and highly entertaining.

Finally we had a fighter on the right who could disarm the Left with their lies, smears, and academic jargon—which was really just coded white racism—particularly directed at young white males.

Finally we had a fighter who stood up for the little guy—the blue collar workers whose jobs were shipped overseas—those suffering from the brutal opioid epidemic—the Covington Catholic students who were falsely persecuted for the crime of wearing a MAGA hat and celebrating life—and the vilification of Justice Brett Kavanuagh by at least three accusers—who were not in the least bit credible to anyone with honesty.

Carlson stood up and defended those who did not kowtow to the BLM mob—even if they might lose their job—and he gave a voice to students who were forced to comply with COVID tyranny or risk getting expelled. He spoke about a lot of issues that were ignored by the ruling class—but mattered to everyday Americans.

Finally we had someone who didn’t just beat the Left with logic and reason, but he did it with humor and facts.

It was entertaining to watch.

But something changed in Carlson in the last year and a half. I cannot pinpoint exactly when it occurred. Maybe it was around the time the war in Ukraine started—but suddenly he seemed to have more interest in picking fights with people on the right than the Marxists, communists, fascists, and those who seek to weaken our nation.

And believe me there are plenty of people on the right who deserve a lot of criticism. The Kinzingers, the Cheneys, the Grahams the Crenshaws etc.

But some of these squabbles seemed petty.

There were the weird criticisms of Texas Governor Greg Abbott, that seemed like they had less to do with his inability to secure the southern border—(it’s not his fault Biden won’t do it), and more to do with some perceived slight that none of us will likely ever know about.

There was the excessive airtime and the guest slots he gave to Tulsi Gabbard—as though by disavowing the Democrat Party, she was somehow a bastion of conservatism. The same could be said of the frequent interviews he did with Robert F. Kennedy Jr.—who with the exception of the Covid lockdowns and vaccine mandates, checks off basically every progressive fantasy.

And let’s not forget that it was right around this time one year ago when Carlson decided to interview Kanye West, mere days before the man who now refers to himself as ‘Ye’ professed to none other than Alex Jones that there was much to admire about Hitler—and that the Holocaust had never actually occurred.

Carlson obviously does not bear any responsibility for the antisemitic and idiotic musings that come out of West’s mouth, but the issue is at a certain point—and maybe this is the fault of his producers, but Carlson mostly stopped having guests on from the Left and seemed to only want to provide a platform not just to those that he agreed with politically, but to those who he knew would be provocative—and would infuriate people on both the Left and the right.

Which brings us to the Hamas terrorist attacks on October 7—also known as the worst attacks against the Jewish people since the Holocaust—and Carlson’s rather bizarre reaction to it.

I do not necessarily fault Carlson for his isolationist stance on Ukraine—and his legitimate questions he has asked as to why we seem to be writing them a blank check without any clear objectives—and how we define success in the region.

But in the case of Israel—Carlson’s reaction has basically been that like Ukraine, this matter does not affect us—people are reacting emotionally to it—and we need to get back to talking about the fentanyl crisis and securing our border—which I agree are two very real issues.

It is hard to imagine a more tone deaf point of view from Carlson—and it’s also hard to imagine it’s not deliberate.

Carlson is either being disingenuous or he does not seem to understand that these attacks have led to an increase in antisemitism not only here at home, but all over the world—or that more than 30 Americans were killed and at least nine more are currently being held hostage as we speak.

Even worse, he actually had the temerity to make this shocking statement in an interview with pseudo-intellectual Candace Owens:

“I’m an American. Our country is being invaded right now. Over 100,000 Americans die every year of fentanyl. Those are real tragedies. I’ve never seen anything like the emotion from any commentator around those tragedies as I’m watching about a foreign tragedy.”

Gee, I don’t know Tucker, maybe it was the fact that roughly 1,200 Israelis were slaughtered in the most barbaric manner possible for the crime of being Jewish.

Maybe it’s the fact that the Jews who live in this country currently don’t feel safe—and for good reason.

Maybe it’s the fact that in all of our major cities, thousands of people are actively celebrating what Hamas did to the Jews.

And maybe it’s the fact that Jews in this country have an attachment to Israel, unlike any other country—because it is afterall the Jewish homeland.

There’s not a soul who shouldn’t be saddened by someone who overdoses on fentanyl, but injecting poison into your system is quite different than monsters going into thousands of Jewish peoples’ homes and burning parents in front of their own children, cutting fetuses out of women, raping them—then kidnapping them and driving them through the streets of Gaza to celebrate.

Just to add icing on the cake, Carlson then expressed anger at Jewish donors of our elite institutions for ignoring anti-white racism for years and only now expressing outrage.

“If the biggest donors at, say, Harvard have decided, well, we’re going to shut it down now, where were you the last 10 years when they were calling for white genocide? You were allowing this. And then I found myself really hating those people, actually,” Carlson said.

Sure there have been a lot of professors who have taught their students lies and said atrocious things about white people over the years, but there has never been anything like this, where a group of animals whose stated goal is to eradicate the Jewish people have actually been cheered on for doing just that.

Does Carlson think for one second that if these same terrorists decided to start murdering random Catholics in their homes near the Vatican—and vowed they would do it again, and again, and if college students started celebrating that kind of slaughter—and then protested against the Italian government that they couldn’t fight back—and just had to accept the slaughter—does he really believe millions of Americans, including Jewish donors would not also be outraged?

The fact that I even have to explain this to someone as smart as Carlson is both appalling and sad.

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About Carpe Diem

Carpe Diem is the pseudonym for a writer who was a speechwriter in the Trump Administration.

Photo: US conservative political commentator Tucker Carlson speaks at the Turning Point Action USA conference in West Palm Beach, Florida, on July 15, 2023. (Photo by GIORGIO VIERA / AFP) (Photo by GIORGIO VIERA/AFP via Getty Images)