The horrific shooting committed this week in Buffalo was by a white supremacist that believes the racist and false "great replacement" conspiracy promoted by conservative media. Not only does he believe that, he’s also an anti-Semite and blames Jews for spreading “critical race theory” and urges others to kill the Jewish man George Soros (who is commonly the subject of conservative media and conspiracy theories).
The shooter chose his particular location because it was the area with the highest concentration of Black people. He traveled over 200 miles and planned the shooting for months. Many people around him already knew about his racism and desire to commit a mass shooting. Reportedly, in the middle of the shooting he apologized to a white cashier and deliberately chose not to kill them, before he continued his rampage against Black people. I don’t have the stomach to watch the video to confirm.
The purpose of this letter is for a critical theory on race. This letter isn’t advocating for critical race theory, which is a legal theory taught in law schools and not in your children’s classrooms like conservative media claims (and, if you look up real CRT it’s reasonable and easily provable). This isn’t the first time a white supremacist has gone on a murderous rampage because of what they were told by conservative media. So let’s ask ourselves: why?
An analysis of Tucker Carlson Tonight, the most watched show on cable TV, shows that this conspiracy was spewed across 400 episodes. The shooter was directly inspired by a conspiracy popularized by the show. Innocent people died because of Tucker Carlson, and some people have rightly called that out. As a result, some have started calling this the Tucker Carlson shooter.
But what about White Society Shooter, to reflect the shared responsibility? Yes, Tucker Carlson definitely has blood on his hands (look up stochastic terrorism). But blood is also on the hands of conservative politicians that also peddle this theory and advocate for policies based on it, like Joe Kent right here in Lewis County. Blood is on those that continue to watch FOX, filling their heads with racism and funding the show through ads. Blood is on corporations that advertise on FOX like Applebees, major car companies, Google and more that deserve to be called out and boycotted.
And finally, blood is on the hands of those of us, white people especially, that knew what conservative media was doing but didn't do enough to challenge and call it out. This white supremacist was only 18, fresh out of school. The education system failed him, and because of that it failed the people who died. We must de-radicalize our friends, families, community members and children with anti-racist education or else these shootings are going to continue. We must invest our time and money into anti-racist movements that are changing how people are educated and preventing them from going down the right-wing rabbit hole.
Rest in peace and in power to those slain by white supremacy.