Revealing the hypocrisy: Tucker Carlson, Steven Crowder, and the influence of toxic media figures


Piper Baxley

The hypocrisy in much of conservative media is interconnected between different pundits all working toward the same goal of spreading disinformation.

Josie Morrow, Views/Entertainment Section Editor

In the world of conservative media, few figures have commanded as much attention and influence as Tucker Carlson and Steven Crowder. With their vast platforms and dedicated followings, they have shaped public opinion on a range of topics.
However, their success is built on promoting hateful rhetoric, and even displaying abusive behavior. It has become evident that the toxic influence of media figures like Carlson and Crowder goes beyond mere political discourse; it poses a threat to the sanctity of journalism and the very fabric of our society.
Tucker Carlson was, up until recently, the most popular conservative media figure. Carlson began his career as a journalist and later transitioned to television. He gained recognition as the co-host of the political debate show “Crossfire” on CNN in the early 2000s. Carlson then took over the coveted 9 p.m. Fox News timeslot garnering millions of daily viewers.
Over the years, on his show, Carlson spread blatant disinformation and fascist rhetoric regularly. He advocated for the great replacement theory, argued that white supremacy does not exist, called the January 6 rioters peaceful protesters, and knowingly lied about the 2020 election results.
During the Black Lives Matter movement of 2020, Carlson employed misleading narratives and cherry-picked incidents to vilify these movements, effectively marginalizing the legitimate concerns they raise to his millions of susceptible viewers.
However, his years of terror on Fox News came to an end when he was abruptly fired from the network in late April of 2023. The reason for his firing was then leaked by the New York Times when Fox News acquired text messages of Carlson’s during Fox News’ defamation suit with Dominion voting systems.
These text messages have Carlson detailing him watching a group of “Trump guys pounding the living sh*t out of an ANTIFA kid” and “rooting for the mob against the man.” According to the messages, he “really wanted them to hurt the kid.”
These text messages, while disturbing, should not have been a surprise to Fox executives. Carlson was willing to dog whistle for violence on national television almost nightly for years on multiple different subjects to millions of Americans. It should have almost been a given that he would be willing to encourage violence in his own private messages.
Steven Crowder is a conservative political commentator and media personality. He gained prominence through his online presence and as the host of the show “Louder with Crowder.” He has accumulated a significant following on social media platforms, where he shares his conservative views and attempts to use satire and humor to express his opinions.
Crowder has become a polarizing figure because of his racially insensitive remarks and stereotypes. In April of 2021, Crowder tried to “recreate” the death of George Floyd for a video attempting to disprove the legally proven murder of Floyd.
Moreover, his commentary on the LGBTQ+ community has been regarded as discriminatory and harmful, with many accusing him of spreading hate and intolerance. In mid-2019, Crowder even called journalist Carlos Maza a “lispy q***r” and other homophobic slurs.
Last month, the “Louder with Crowder ” show took a break from its normal topics for Crowder to speak candidly about his divorce. Throughout the video, Crowder mentions that he had “no control” over his wife’s decision to divorce him and that there was no physical or emotional abuse.
However, Crowder’s narrative was soon destroyed when leaked footage by the New York Post of a security camera in his backyard from June 2021 shows Crowder smoking a cigar and berating his 8-month pregnant wife for not doing enough “wifely things” for him.
Crowder’s wife can be heard saying “I love you … but your abuse is sick,” with him responding, “Watch it. Watch it. F**king watch it.”
The video is evidence in itself of Crowder’s emotional abuse and overcontrolling of his wife. In the same way as Carlson, the leaked footage of Crowder should not have come as a surprise because of the way that he speaks and treats women on his show.
While the hypocrisy of these two popular conservative media figures is apparent, they are still able to affect public opinion on controversial issues.
Steven Crowder’s distaste for no-fault divorce comes with a recent wave of legislation echoing his opinion in state legislatures in Texas, Nebraska and Louisiana. The same can be said about Crowder and Carlson’s constant spread of misinformation surrounding the 2020 election leading to a large portion of American voters still believing that the election is fraudulent.
The cases of Tucker Carlson and Steven Crowder serve as alarming reminders of the influence and dangers posed by toxic media figures. By always questioning the narratives presented to us and demanding accountability from those who wield such significant influence, the sanctity of journalism and the importance of responsible reporting should never be compromised in the pursuit of ratings or personal agendas.