A white supremacist shot and killed 10, mostly Black, people in Buffalo yesterday but instead of rethinking their own white supremacist rhetoric, Fox & Friends and a MAGA panel salivated for Elon Musk to bring what they euphemistically called “free speech” to Twitter.
On Fox News, racism and white supremacy is always recast as “free speech,” something they only seem to support for conservative bigots – and never mind that Twitter-purchaser Musk’s idea of free speech seems limited to what he approves of. Tucker Carlson, the network’s top white nationalist, who has repeatedly promoted the same “great replacemement” theory as the Buffalo shooter, often whitewashes hate mongering as “free speech” – and never mind that he can’t tolerate any dissent. Carlson was so excited about his kind of rhetoric running amok on Twitter, he returned to the platform months before the deal went through (in fact, it’s currently on hold).
It's not just F***y Tucky who thinks Musk’s purchase means an open door for white supremacy and extremism. Other bigoted extremists do, too.
There’s no indication that the Buffalo shooter was motivated by Carlson or anyone else on Fox News. But there’s also no doubt that Carlson and his MAGA cronies have mainstreamed the formerly far-right “great replacement” theory – with the Murdochs’ blessing.
So, if Fox News had any decency, there would have been a panel questioning its promotion of a theory that just motivated a mass murder. Instead, it was a call for more of the same, covered up as a call for “free speech,” while Fox & Friends pretended that conservative speech is stifled on Twitter. In reality, an internal review found that Twitter’s algorithms “amplify right-leaning political content more than left-leaning content.”
A Fox & Friends panel this morning was hosted by Carley Shimkus (she attacked Vice President Kamala Harris for tweeting “enjoy the long weekend” just before last Memorial Day, claiming it disrespected the troops, yet didn’t seem to have a problem with Tucker Carlson actually accusing our military of “not seem[ing] interested in protecting the country” on Memorial Day).
That Carley Shimkus now played a free speech lover on TV as she hosted Sean Duffy (husband of the hateful, dishonest, Trump-worshiper and Big Lie-promoter Rachel Campos-Duffy, usually a weekend cohost on Fox & Friends), Donald Trump's daughter-in-law, Lara Trump, and Leo Terrell, the “civil rights lawyer” remade as a Trump cheerleader.
Shimkus began by setting up an “only the left hates free speech” meme by saying that one of Musk’s messages is that “the left has owned Twitter since its inception, and he is gonna come in and change it and make it more fair.”
Lara Trump did her part for promoting hate speech by celebrating Musk for “owning the libs.” She said gleefully, “Just when you think that Elon Musk couldn’t do anything to make them melt down more on the left, he went ahead and called ‘em ‘libs’ which – gosh, would love to be a fly on the wall to see the reaction to that!” Someone laughed off camera.
Trump continued by praising Musk for “highlighting that there has been censorship” for “people on the right.” In a rare moment of truth-telling Trump also said that nobody “really knows” where Musk stands on the subject of content moderation but she also added, “we all hope that we have a level platform on Twitter.”
Shimkus gave Terrell a nudge to go on a racial tangent by complaining that people on the left “are essentially saying that free speech is racist,” then “asking” him, “What’s your reaction to that?”
Terrell did not play the race card but he did suggest he hoped for more hate speech and lies:
TERRELL: You know, I’ve been a civil rights lawyer for 30 years. Free speech is what gives us the right to debate. The left doesn’t want the right to debate. They want to control the information. That’s why they’re really upset with Elon Musk. They don’t want his involvement in Twitter. Because to have this type of open discussion is to challenge their ideas. Because the libs do not believe in facts. They want to believe in argument, power and control. And I think what has happened is, if you noticed, when Elon Musk mentioned his intention to buy Twitter, thousands of people returned. I think I have received over 200,000 new followers on Twitter because of this announcement.
I just hope he goes through. I hope that Twitter is purchased by Elon Musk and I hope President Trump joins Twitter again.
Duffy claimed Musk’s purchase of Twitter was “to bring this Founding Father idea of free speech back into the American consciousness.”
Nobody pointed out that Musk is from apartheid South Africa.
You can watch Fox prove it has no decency (again) below, from the May 15, 2022 Fox & Friends.
Under the inhuman tyranny of Wrinkled Rupert and his misbegotten son, this behaviour is, in fact, a condition of employment.
Other than that, what’s not to like?