Minutes after Laura Ingraham fear mongered that we’re all in terrible danger from out-of-control Black Lives Matter protesters, she helped legitimize Donald Trump’s latest shout-out to QAnon, which has been labeled a domestic terrorism threat.
As I wrote in my previous post, Ingraham prefaced her pre-recorded interview with Trump last night by saying that if Joe Biden is elected, “the whole country is going to look like Portland.”
But she had no problem with Trump spouting a baseless conspiracy theory about Biden, one The New York Times notes was “echoing themes struck by his supporters in the QAnon movement.”
Here’s the relevant exchange:
TRUMP: And Biden - what Biden is - I don't even like to mention Biden because he's not controlling anything.
INGRAHAM: Who - who do you think is pulling Biden's strings? Is it former Obama officials?
TRUMP: People that you've never heard of, people that are in the dark shadows. People that are--
INGRAHAM: What does that mean? That sounds like conspiracy theory, dark shadows. What is that?
TRUMP: No. People that you haven't heard of. They are people that are on the streets, they're people that are controlling the streets. We had somebody get on a plane from a certain city this weekend. And in the plane, it was almost completely loaded with thugs wearing these dark uniforms, black uniforms with gear and this and that. They're on a plane.
INGRAHAM: Where is - where is this?
TRUMP: I'll tell you sometime, but it's under investigation right now. But they came from a certain city, and this person was coming to the Republican National Convention. And there were like seven people on the plane like this person and then a lot of people were on the plane to do big damage. They were coming--
Instead of questioning why Trump was dangerously promoting a conspiracy theory that is supposedly too secret to discuss and that is “under investigation” and thus, presumably unverified, Ingraham started to legitimize it:
INGRAHAM: Planning for Washington.
TRUMP: Yes. This was all - this is all happening. And--
INGRAHAM: But the money is coming from somewhere.
TRUMP: Money is coming from--
INGRAHAM: When - how can it be tracked?
TRUMP: --from some very stupid rich people that have no idea that if their thing ever succeeded, which it won't, they will be thrown to the wolves like you've never seen before.
This is not Trump’s first shoutout to QAnon. Far from being a kooky but benign group of conspiracy theorists, the FBI has warned about QAnon, "these conspiracy theories very likely will emerge, spread, and evolve in the modern information marketplace, occasionally driving both groups and individual extremists to carry out criminal or violent acts."
Instead of challenging Trump's promotion of inflammatory conspiracy theories, Ingraham all but gave it an explicit stamp of approval.
You can watch Ingraham help mainstream extremism below, from the August 31, 2020 The Ingraham Angle.
The same people are wont to deny scientifically proven risks like climate change and Covid-19 (among others), preferring to fear monger about stuff like radiation from cellphone towers (despite many studies) and the noise from wind farms. Most of those who deny the existence of Covid-19 on the grounds that they can’t see the virus, will happily take antibiotics.
I like to remind them that it was common for uneducated people to resist the introduction of electricity (my grannie had stories to tell about that) and … way, way, way back in time (human nature being pretty constant), the wheel.
Translation: “It’s 100 percent bullshit that I heard and pulled right out of my fat ass.”