John Legend has called for Fox News’ Tucker Carlson to be “de-platformed”, accusing the presenter of espousing a racist theory that the Buffalo mass shooting suspect allegedly posted online.
Payton S. Gendron, 18, is accused of carrying out what authorities have said was a racially-motivated attack at a grocery store in Buffalo, New York on Saturday (May 14) that left 10 people dead and three injured. Gendron, who is white, has pled not guilty to first-degree murder, Erie County DA John J. Flynn confirmed in a news release.
In a pair of tweets posted yesterday (May 16), Legend made reference to the ‘Great Replacement Theory’ that Carlson has, according to a recent investigation by The New York Times, pushed in more than 400 of his shows on Fox News.
Supporters of the ‘Great Replacement Theory’ have regularly blamed Democrats in the US for utilising immigration as a tool to enhance their voting base. It’s claimed that the Buffalo gunman posted a 180-page document to the anonymous message board 4chan repeating these views, as well as other white supremacist ideologies.
Posting on Twitter, Legend, who also re-shared a viral compilation featuring various clips of Carlson discussing the ‘Great Replacement Theory’ on Fox News, alleged that Carlson “and similar proponents of this evil ideology continue to poison the minds of millions”.
“They have contributed to multiple terrorist massacres and will continue to do so,” Legend added. “This is sickening and dangerous. This should not be on a major cable network.”
Followers of this ideology have been massacring Jews, Blacks, Asians, Latinos. When will we ostracize and deplatform these terrorist sympathizers on our TV and social networks?
— John Legend (@johnlegend) May 16, 2022
Carlson has not directly responded to Legend’s comments. During the opening monologue of his Fox News show yesterday, Carlson spoke about the “horrifying amount of violence in the US”.
He also claimed that the suspect’s 180-page document was not aligned with the political right or left (via NBC News), describing it as a “rambling pastiche of slogans and internet memes” and a “product of a diseased and disorganised mind.”
The presenter also blamed US President Joe Biden and liberals for politicising the tragedy and falling back on “race politics” discourse, while also declaring that “all lives matter”.
When asked for comment, a Fox News spokesperson directed both NBC News and The Independent to on-air statements in which Carlson had denounced political violence.
Justin Bieber, meanwhile, addressed the Buffalo mass shooting while performing at the city’s Keybank Center.
During the show, Bieber referred to the shooting ahead of airing ‘Hurt’, telling the crowd: “As we know, there’s so much division in this world. So much racial injustice. As you and I both know, racism is evil and it is diabolical.
“But what you and I get to do, we get to be the difference makers. We get to be the people who continue to have the conversations with our friends and our family and our loved ones. We continue to be allies.”