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Relax, Tucker Carlson, Reports of ‘Replacement’ Are Greatly Exaggerated

Clarence Page, Tribune Content Agency on

In an apparent bid to pick up where the late Rush Limbaugh and the deplatformed former President Donald Trump left off as leading voices for the far-right, Fox News star Tucker Carlson has taken up that burning cross that passes itself off as a “theory.”

It’s called the “great replacement theory.” It was cited by the mass murderers in New Zealand, San Diego and El Paso, Texas, in recent years and turned up as a leading motivator in the Jan. 6 attack by Trump supporters on the U.S. Capitol, according to University of Chicago political science professor Robert Pape, director of the Chicago Project on Security and Threats.

CPOST, which specializes in analyzing terror attacks, examined court records, home county demographics and two opinion surveys that it conducted of 377 Americans arrested and charged in the Capitol attack. “One driver overwhelmingly stood out,” Pape wrote in a Washington Post op-ed: “fear of the ‘Great Replacement.’ ”

The theory, credited to a 2012 book by the French philosopher Renaud Camus and peddled by white nationalists around the globe, puts a new spin on an old fear that minorities of color are steadily replacing white populations because of mass immigration policies and low white birthrates.

You could hear it in the “You will not replace us” and, more pointedly, “Jews will not replace us” chants of white nationalists marching with tiki torches in Charlottesville, Va., in 2017.

The theory’s essence was expressed by former Rep. Steve King, an Iowa Republican, in a tweet that led to his downfall among his party’s leaders and his district’s voters, “We can’t restore our civilization with somebody else’s babies.”

 

And last week, you could hear it in remarks that brought a call from the Anti-Defamation League for Fox News to fire Carlson, which Fox’s owners declined to do.

“Now, I know that the left and all the little gatekeepers on Twitter become literally hysterical if you use the term ‘replacement,’ if you suggest that the Democratic Party is trying to replace the current electorate, the voters now casting ballots, with new people, more obedient voters from the Third World,” Carlson said, as a guest on “Fox News Tonight.” “But they become hysterical because that’s what’s happening actually. Let’s just say it: That’s true.”

Nope, as the old “Porgy and Bess” song goes, “It ain’t necessarily so,” even if some Democrats as well as Republicans think it is.

For one thing, projecting the racial makeup of future populations calls for data beyond the ability of our current census methods to provide.

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