People on social media condemned Tucker Carlson for inciting lawbreaking after he encouraged his Fox News viewers to harass strangers for wearing masks to limit the spread of COVID-19.
During “Tucker Carlson Tonight,” the host told his prime-time audience to ask people wearing masks outside to remove them. He also said people should call the police or child protective services if they see children wearing masks outdoors, calling it “child abuse.”
Carlson, amping up his falsehoods about coronavirus precautions and vaccinations, ignored government guidance that children older than 2 who can safely do so should continue to wear masks in public settings and falsely suggested masks deprive children of oxygen.
The cable TV personality has been criticized throughout the pandemic for purveying dangerous misinformation about COVID-19, and faced fierce backlash on social media over his latest comments. He was accused of inciting harassment and potential violence against both adults and children, encouraging people to abuse the 911 and child services systems, and spreading demonstrably false information about preventing the spread of the virus.
Fox News did not immediately respond to WBHnews’s request for comment.
“They’re the aggressors,” Carlson said of people who wear masks during the segment. “It’s our job to brush them back and restore the society we were born in. So the next time you see someone in a mask on the sidewalk or on the bike path, do not hesitate. Ask politely but firmly, ‘Would you please take off your mask? Science shows there is no reason for you to be wearing it. Your mask is making me uncomfortable.’”
President Joe Biden is expected to announce Tuesday that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention will relax guidance on wearing masks outdoors for fully vaccinated people. The current advice is to wear them in public and practice social distancing, except when visiting other fully vaccinated people or unvaccinated people from a single household who are at low risk for severe COVID-19 disease.
#TuckerMustGo and #FireTuckerCarlson were trending on Twitter Monday evening. Here’s some of the reaction:
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