This May Be the Text That Doomed Tucker Carlson

'It's not how white men fight,' Fox host wrote in message obtained by 'NYT'
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted May 3, 2023 6:28 AM CDT
This May Be the Text That Doomed Tucker Carlson
Tucker Carlson attends the final round of the Bedminster Invitational LIV Golf tournament in Bedminster, NJ, Sunday, July 31, 2022.   (AP Photo/Seth Wenig, File)

The New York Times has obtained a text message Tucker Carlson sent to a producer in the hours after the Capitol insurrection on Jan. 6, 2021, which reportedly contributed to his ouster from Fox News. In it, Carlson describes a video he watched in which "a group of Trump guys surrounded an Antifa kid and started pounding the living s--- out of him." "It was three against one, at least," he wrote. "Jumping a guy like that is dishonorable obviously. It's not how white men fight." Though the displacement of white Americans by people of color had been "a recurring theme" on Carlson's show, the message "revealed more about his views on racial superiority" and "alarmed the Fox board," which learned of it a day before Dominion Voting Systems' defamation trial against Fox was set to begin, per the Times.

Carlson had previously claimed immigrants made the country "poorer" and "dirtier." He'd also claimed white supremacy was "a hoax," while his chief writer was found to have posted racist rants online. Indeed, "Carlson had courted the kind of controversy that would have gotten a lesser-known personality fired," per the Washington Post. Coming on top of other damaging messages revealed in the lead up to the trial, the text not only played a role in Fox's decision to settle defamation claims with Dominion for $787.5 million but pushed the board to open an investigation into Carlson's conduct, the Times reports.

Earlier in the exchange, Carlson had referred to then-President Trump as "a demonic force, a destroyer"—which Dominion might've wished to highlight during the trial. Carlson went on to say that he "found myself rooting for the mob against the man, hoping they'd hit him harder, kill him. I really wanted them to hurt the kid. I could taste it." Carlson then wrote that "somewhere deep in my brain, an alarm went off" and he realized the victim was "a human being," "that somewhere somebody probably loves this kid" and "I shouldn’t gloat over his suffering" or "reduce people to their politics." (More Tucker Carlson stories.)

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