Tucker Carlson defends QAnon believers

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Fox host Tucker Carlson has maintained his support for Donald Trump (Getty Images)
Fox host Tucker Carlson has maintained his support for Donald Trump (Getty Images)

Fox News host Tucker Carlson is once again courting controversy after he likened media criticism of the QAnon movement to government censorship of the mind.

The entertainer made the comments during a recent broadcast of his show. After playing a montage of news clips that featured reporters arguing that QAnon is dangerous, Carlson railed against the idea of government censorship of people's minds.

None of the journalists in the clips played by Carlson were advocating for any kind of government retribution for QAnon supporters, however, meaning was attacking a position that no one took.

"There's a clear line between democracy and tyranny, between self-government and dictatorship. And here's what that line is. That line is your conscience. They cannot cross that. Government has every right to tell you what to do. No democratic government can ever tell you what to think. Your mind belongs to you, and it is yours and yours alone," Carlson said.

There were no elected officials present in any of the video clips Carlson shared, and no calls for legislation. He went on to warn about government mind control efforts.

"Once politicians attempt to control what you believe they are no longer politicians — they are by definition dictators. And if they succeed in controlling what you believe, you are no longer a citizen, you are not a free man, you are a slave."

Carlson has invited QAnon adherents onto his show in the past. Last year, the actress Kirstie Alley – who has used the QAnon “where we go one we go all” phrase in her posts – appeared at least twice on Carlson’s show.

Noor Bin Laden, the niece of Osama Bin Laden, has also indicated that she is a Q-follower, and has also appeared as a guest on Carlson’s show.

Members of the QAnon conspiracy theory movement participated in the attack on the US Capitol on 6 January. They have been involved in other violent incidents, including one man who held up a pizza shop with an AR-15 because he believed it was the site of a paedophile ring, and another man who shot and killed a reputed New York mob boss because he believed that organised crime elements were part of the "deep state."

The QAnon movement was born on the image board 4chan, and claims that a rogue government agent with a "Q" level security clearance is working alongside Donald Trump and the disguised and still living John F Kennedy Jr to rid the world of the "deep state" and a cabal of Satanic child sex trafficking cannibals who also happen to be Democratic politicians and Hollywood movie starts.

Q adherents look forward to a future apocalyptic event called "The Storm" during which Democratic leaders will be rounded up, tried and executed en masse for their supposed crimes against the country.

Many Q believers were led to think that "The Storm" was going to happen on 6 January. When the insurrection failed, they believed it would happen on Inauguration Day, arguing that the huge military presence in Washington DC was not to protect Mr Biden and the Congress, but rather to arrest them.

When that day passed without mass executions, the Q believers pushed their goalposts back yet again. This time, judgement day for Democrats is scheduled for 4 March, which is the US's original Inauguration Day.

Carlson did not mention any of the those details while giving his impassioned speech about thought policing.

Travis View, the host of Q Anon Anonymous, a podcast that has followed the Q movement since its early days, dismissed Carlson's complaint.

"Your freedom to criticise criminally violent movements is precious. Don't let busybodies like Tucker Carlson cancel you for simply expressing your honest thoughts about domestic terrorism," he said. "If his feelings are hurt because of your honest opinion, that's not your concern."

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