A couple of weeks ago Mediaite writer Justin Baragona called Fox News host Tucker Carlson a “white nationalist” in a wildly unfair, and mostly false story for the pop culture site.
The response from conservatives was almost immediate, with Baragona’s own Mediaite colleague Larry O’Connor taking him to task for his vicious and wrong assertion.
This column is actually a full-frontal criticism of Mediaite and what I see as an unfair attack we published this morning.
One thing I have always respected about this site that I now call home to my byline is that Mediaite would not stoop to the level of other publications and media outlets whose main tactic against conservatives in the government or media or pop culture is to point at us and scream “RACIST!” And sadly, that’s just what the column did with this unfair attack on Tucker Carlson.
Make no mistake, as we now live in the world of “dog whistles” it’s very clear that in the post-Charlottesville era of American media, when one is called a “White Nationalist” one is being labeled a racist. A Klansman, a Nazi…
This column took what I view as a lazy, childish way out. We can, and should, do better. Members of the media, whom we have the privilege of celebrating and critiquing, deserve better. And, Ibelieve, so do our readers.
It took some time, but Carlson has finally responded to the terrible Mediaite attack himself, and boy, was he fired up.
Here’s what Carlson said on his Fox News show earlier this week:
It wasn’t that long ago that calling someone a racist was a big deal. Now everywhere you look, people just barely to the right of Al Gore are being denounced as white supremacists, white nationalists, neo-Confederates. It happened to us last week. At a website called ‘Mediaite,’ blogger Justin Baragona wrote a piece entitled, ‘Tucker Carlson Isn’t Even Trying To Hide His White Nationalist Leanings Anymore.’
His evidence for this? Well, it was a segment we did pointing out that the Democratic party had basically given up trying to appeal to the American middle class and has started openly encouraging illegal immigration. We didn’t mention race at all because it’s irrelevant. Stagnant blue-collar wages hurt black Americans in St. Louis every bit as much as they hurt white Americans in Des Moines. So how exactly does that qualify as white nationalism?
Well, Justin Baragona didn’t explain nor did he accept our invitation to come on this show and lay out his reasoning because, like an awful lot of name-callers, he’s a coward. Too bad. It would have been interesting to hear someone tell us exactly what a white nationalist is and how we qualify.
We’ve got to stop demagoguing our political opponents and assigning motives to their actions when we really have no idea what’s going on inside their head. There are solid, reasonable arguments to be made on both the left and right of most political issues. In fact, throughout most of our history politicians have been debating tough political issues from various perspectives for a variety of reasons… and most of the time our leaders have been well intentioned.
The kind of racial demagoguery currently being used as a bludgeon by the Left does our nation no good. Indeed, these hateful attacks serve only to weaken our country and to undermine our future.
It has to stop.