On Tuesday night, Fox News's increasingly fascistic, white nationalist-sympathizing host Tucker Carlson issued a strange aside during his usual screeds against racial minorities and shadowy "elites" and whatever other groups he can think to demonize on any given occasion. He was, he explained, responding to reports that The Washington Post's Erik Wemple ("a mentally unbalanced middle-aged man," Tucker smarmed) had been investigating Carlson's college yearbook — "to see if we'd done anything naughty at the age of 19."
The segment, random as it was, clearly indicated something bad was about to drop and that Carlson — perhaps the most diabolically effective broadcaster on air today — was eager to get ahead of it, whatever "it" was.
On Wednesday, that "it" appeared to be, at least in part, Tucker's claim that he was a member of the "Dan White Society" and the "Jesse Helms Foundation" — two groups with decidedly ignominious namesakes, as highlighted on Twitter by author Travis Akers.
White, as Akers notes, is the former California politician who murdered San Francisco Mayor George Moscone, and city supervisor Harvey Milk — an LGBTQ+ icon California's first openly gay elected official — in 1978.
Long-serving North Carolina Republican Sen. Jesse Helms, meanwhile, was among the most racist, homophobic members of Congress within the past century, having opposed nearly every instance of civil rights legislation and openly calling members of the LGBTQ+ community "weak, morally sick wretches."
It's worth noting that, as of this moment, neither the yearbook page nor Carlson's professed involvement in either "group" has been independently confirmed or acknowledged by Tucker himself. However, it seems deeply on-brand that Carlson would lump himself in with some of the most abhorrent, hateful, violent figures in American politics, even if only as the sort of cheeky "ha ha, triggered" effort upon which he's built an entire career.
So, what's more revolting: someone planting their name next to an infamous assassin and a lifelong racist as a "joke," or because they really mean it?