Carlson’s Text That Alarmed Fox Leaders: ‘It’s Not How White Men Fight’
A text message sent by Tucker Carlson that set off a panic at the highest levels of Fox on the eve of its billion-dollar defamation trial showed its most popular host sharing his private, inflammatory views about violence and race. The discovery of the message contributed to a chain of events that ultimately led to Carlson’s firing.
In the message, sent to one of his producers in the hours after violent Trump supporters stormed the Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, Carlson described how he had recently witnessed a confrontation between two men, one of whom was black. Carlson wrote, “I loved how he [the white man] didn’t back down, and he wasn’t cowed, but at the same time he didn’t seem angry or like he was going to hurt anyone. He just kept getting louder and more insistent, but he was also clearly not going to become violent. So, I guess my question is: How do we get white men to fight like that?”
This message caused alarm among Fox leaders who were concerned that it could be interpreted as glorifying violence and promoting white supremacy. The fallout from Carlson’s controversial text was swift, with many calling for his firing. Ultimately, Fox decided to part ways with Carlson, citing a breach in their standards and values.