Right-wing media pundits and politicians continue to use the rhetoric of “The Great Replacement” theory, which claims that white Europeans and Americans are being replaced by non-white immigrants.
Though the theory has been adopted and promoted by the white supremacist movement, it is rooted in a racist European philosophy and feeds off white people’s fear that they are being increasingly and intentionally oppressed and made to feel guilty for their place in society. In 2017, white supremacists who marched in Charlottesville, Virginia iterated the slogan in their shouts of “You/Jews will not replace us!”
More recently, these fears have been stoked by President Biden’s immigration policies and response to the Afghan refugee crisis, which Great Replacement acolytes believe represents a strategic and purposeful effort to change the white demographics in America by bringing in non-white immigrants who will ultimately vote for the Democratic party. These claims bolster anti- immigrant rhetoric and hate, while promoting racist, xenophobic and Islamophobic tropes that invigorate the extreme right.
One of the most visible Great Replacement propagandists is Fox media personality Tucker Carlson, who claimed during a September 22 broadcast of “Tucker Carlson Tonight” that the point of Biden’s immigration policy is “to reduce the political power of the people whose ancestors live here, and dramatically increase the proportion of Americans newly-arrived from the third world.” He went on to refer to the policy as “The Great Replacement” which he explained is “the replacement of legacy Americans with more obedient people from far-away countries.”
Carlson’s rhetoric was immediately echoed by U.S. Rep Brian Babin (R-TX-36) in a September 23 Newsmax interview, when he said that Biden and the Democrats are using immigration to "replace the American electorate with a third world electorate."
One day later, Charlie Kirk of the far-right student group Turning Point USA said on his show that Texas should “deputize a citizen force and put them on the border” to protect “white demographics in America.” He added that the left is focused on “bringing in voters that they want, and they like, and honestly, diminishing and decreasing white demographics in America.”
The same day, during an appearance on the Megyn Kelly Show, Tucker Carlson criticized the ADL for calling out his Great Replacement comments and reiterated his view that the Democrats are “going to change the composition of the population and bring in people who will vote for” them.
On September 25, U.S. Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL-1) voiced his support for Tucker Carlson and The Great Replacement theory, tweeting, “@TuckerCarlson is CORRECT about Replacement Theory as he explains what is happening to America. The ADL is a racist organization.”
White supremacists celebrate: “We are mainstreaming now.”
In the days following Carlson’s September 22 broadcast, some white supremacists are celebrating the “mainstreaming” of their views, just as they did when Carlson railed against “white genocide” in April 2021. Several white supremacists gave themselves credit, with one person writing, “This never would have happened if it wasn’t for us ringing the alarm bell.” Another wrote, “We need to stop being so down on ourselves. Five, six, years ago, nobody was talking about demographics. Now Tucker is name dropping the Great Replacement Theory on his show…That’s due to us.” Others made antisemitic posts targeting the ADL including claims that Jews are behind white replacement and that ADL is destroying the USA on “behalf of the globalist cabal.”
Extremist comments referencing mainstreaming of the Replacement theory:
In a Telegram post featuring videos of “Replacement” comments by Carlson, Kirk and Babin, Vincent James wrote, “We are the mainstream now. Our message and worldview are inevitably the conclusions every conservative in the country will come to.” James runs The Red Elephants, a media entity which promotes conspiracy theories, antisemitic beliefs and white supremacist mantras.
Brad Griffin, the founder of the white supremacist website Occidental Dissent, wrote an article saying that the protests following the murder of George Floyd, Trump’s defeat and the rollout of systematic racism has “created greater racial awareness” and that Carlson, Kirk and other rightwing influencers “are responding to the racial anxiety of their audience.” He ended with, “We’ve moved up in the world. We’re getting lip service now.”
White supremacist leader, organizer and self–promoter Nick Fuentes wrote in his Telegram channel, “Such a Whitepill when Tucker Carlson and Charlie Kirk are openly pushing Groyper/Nick Fuentes rhetoric. At this rate, Trump 2024 could be more based than 2016 or 2020.”
Failed political candidate turned TruNews cohost Lauren Witzke posted on Telegram, “This shows that America First values are growing and cannot be ignored. Only time will tell if it trickles down into TPUSA (doubt). Kirk's 2021 journey in addition to Tucker Carlson covering demographic replacement clearly shows that America First values are gaining steam. Hold the line and keep fighting the good fight.”
Warren Balogh, a talking head for the white supremacist National Justice Party wrote in his Telegram channel, “…the only thing that matters” is that Carlson’s arguments “serve to make WN [white nationalist] talking points mainstream while completely stripping them of their actual meaning or power.”
Sampling of antisemitic posts directed at ADL:
“ADL is run by Jews who know that the Jews are ultimately behind the replacement and when White people put 2 and 2 together, we will start warming up the incinerators.” Eric Stratton @mehrmantraut227 ~ GAB
Based. Apologize to Tucc. He’s /ourlad/. Gas the ADL” Anonymous ~ 4Chan