The culture war, or perhaps we should call it the last leg of the Civil War, just got uglier. Fox News host Tucker Carlson lashed out at Senator Tammy Duckworth for supporting changing the names of military bases named after Confederates. Duckworth also advocates a “national dialogue” on George Washington’s statues. For this, Carlson opined that Duckworth is a “deeply silly and unimpressive person” (my God, look who’s talking) and part of a group of “people [who] hate America.”
Duckworth is a hero, maimed while serving her country in a war zone. Carlson never served his country for a minute in the military and he dis-serves it now. He’s a propagandist, one who substitutes emotional triggers for rational argument. After college Carlson applied for work at the CIA and after they rejected him, he decided to become a talking head on television. Now he’s got the hubris to accuse the likes of Tammy Duckworth of hating America. Carlson doesn’t speak for America, he speaks for Amerikkka and that’s the problem. The Hill:
“You’re not supposed to criticize Tammy Duckworth in any way because she once served in the military,” Carlson said. “Most people just ignore her. But when Duckworth does speak in public, you’re reminded what a deeply silly and unimpressive person she is.”
“It’s long been considered out of bounds to question a person’s patriotism. It’s a very strong charge, and we try not ever to make it. But in the face of all of this, the conclusion can’t be avoided. These people actually hate America. There’s no longer a question about that,” Carlson claimed.
Conservative writer and Bulwark founder Charlie Sykes called the shot. Carlson is taking fire from all shades of the political spectrum for this abomination.
One hopes Tucker still has the capacity to blush. https://t.co/sWrcqBjc58
— Charlie Sykes (@SykesCharlie) July 7, 2020
If ability to feel shame is a prerequisite, he probably doesn't.
— Elizabeth Spiers (@espiers) July 7, 2020
Trump-centric Fox News and the GOP follow the lead of America’s most pro-Russian president. Russian state media have aired so many of Tucker Carlson’s comments that the host of Russia’s state TV lovingly described Carlson as “practically our co-host.” https://t.co/UCB0msloRd
— Julia Davis (@JuliaDavisNews) July 5, 2020
Evidently the bridge too far for Carlson and those who “think” like him is the suggestion about George Washington. It should be noted that Duckworth suggested a dialogue. That’s all she’s on record saying. She isn’t advocating destruction of Washington’s statues, merely discussion. But make no mistake, this is a firestorm. This is one of those moments which has hit a nerve. It’s ugly now, it will get uglier still. And also bear in mind that the culture war is Trump’s reelection platform, kit and kaboodle. He’s got nothing else, so sowing discord and division is it.
Maybe Carlson will lose more advertisers. This is pure poison being spewed on the airwaves nightly. This is the Pandora’s box that Trump’s ascension opened and I don’t know if it will ever get shut. The level of civil discourse in this country has plummeted way below anything I would have ever thought possible. Fox News used to be mostly ridiculous, with banner headlines about “President Poupon” the day that Obama put Dijon mustard on a burger. If only we could return to that. The only thing I feel comfortable saying, because it is true with respect to all things Trumpian, is that it will get worse still. That’s the nature of this beast.