New report ties a Charlottesville defendant to Tucker Carlson's rhetoric
A report from BuzzFeed News this week ties a direct line between Christopher Cantwell, a white supremacist being sued for his role in the deadly 2017 Charlottesville rally, to Fox News host Tucker Carlson.
Case documents filed back in September 2019 indicate that Cantwell's has been a follower of the Fox News host for quite some time, reporter Christopher Miller noted. In the documents, he referenced Carlson when he shared the reason why he believes he is being prosecuted. The white supremacist insists his prosecution is nothing more than an effort to silence him and others with the same far-right beliefs. Former President Donald Trump and Carlson were both used as references to support his claims.
"This is evidenced by the President of the United States, and the 2nd most popular show in cable news (Tucker Carlson) being branded as 'White Nationalists' on account of sharing a small number of our views on the pressing issues of our time," Cantwell said.
Another white supremacist who was incarcerated with Cantwell also conducted an interview where he echoed similar sentiments. Speaking to Buzzfeed News, Jarrett Williams Smith, a white supremacist who was incarcerated with Cantwell in Illinois, recently recalled their time behind bars together. At the time, Cantwell was incarcerated after threatening to extort the wife of a fellow Neo-Nazi. Smith revealed he, Cantwell, and a group of white supremacist inmates would watch the primetime conservative host's segments and were motivated by his rhetoric.
While Cantwell's claims are disturbing, they do not come as a surprise. Many white supremacists are increasingly attuned to Carlson's rhetoric. More recently, the primetime host has reported on another dangerous concept that appears to be fueling the anger of white supremacists.
Carlson's "white replacement" theory, described as "a white supremacist delusion based on the bogus assumption that Democrats and liberal progressives are working to replace white people of European descent with non-European immigrants," has led to hypervigilance among far-right extremists. It is also a tool expected to give former President Donald Trump more ammunition for his impending 2024 presidential run.
Correction: This story has been updated to clarify that Smith made the allegations about Cantwell's time in prison.