President Joe Biden on Tuesday would not call out Tucker Carlson or any other official by name even as he criticized them for touting ‘replacement theory.’
‘I believe anybody who acts as a replacement is to blame – not for this particular crime, but it’s for no purpose, no purpose, except profit and/or political benefit. And it’s wrong. It’s just simply wrong,’ he told reporters as he prepared to leave Buffalo.
Earlier Biden called on all Americans to reject the ‘lie’ of the ‘great replacement’ conspiracy theory and slammed those who tout it as out for power and political gain.
Biden issued his call in an emotional speech in Buffalo after a suspect killed 10 people during a grocery store shooting in what’s being called a racially motivated attack. The president choked up when he talked about one of the victims, who was killed while shopping for a birthday cake for his three-year-old son.
President Joe Biden doesn’t call out Tucker Carlson by name as he slams those who push ‘replacement theory’
Tucker Carlson said the document written by Buffalo grocery store shooting suspect Payton Gendron was ‘crazy’ and the product of a ‘diseased mind
‘Hate will not prevail and white supremacy will not have the last word,’ he said.
And Biden called out those in politics and the media who have spread the ‘great replacement theory,’ a conspiracy theory that claims non-white individuals are being brought into the United States to ‘replace’ white voters to achieve a political agenda.
The once-fringe racist idea became a popular refrain among media figures like Tucker Carlson and Laura Ingraham of Fox News. Some Republicans have been accused of espousing ideas similar to it.
Biden called it a ‘hate’ that ‘through the media and politics, the internet, has radicalized angry, alienated, lost, and isolated individuals into falsely believing that they will be replaced. That’s the word, ‘Replaced,’ by the other. By people who don’t look like them, and you are therefore, in their perverse ideology, that they are being fed and possessed, lesser beings.’
‘I call on all Americans to reject the lie, and I condemn those who spread the lie for power, political gain, and for profit,’ Biden said. ‘That’s what it is. We have now seen too many times the deadly and destructive violence this ideology and unleashes.’
Biden also said the majority of America was made of minorities.
‘We are the most multiracial, most dynamic nation in the history of the world. Now is the time for people of all races, every background, to speak up as a majority in America and reject white supremacy,’ he said.
‘These hate filled attacks represent the views of the hateful minority. We can’t allow them to destroy America, the real America. We can’t allow them to destroy the soul of the nation,’ he added.
Whites are heading toward minority status in the United States. In 2018, U.S. Census estimates showed for the first time that whites dropped to below 50% of the under-15 population.
That change is largely due to migration of Latinos and Asian Americans. Latinos are the largest-growing group, while Asian Americans are the fastest growing.
Payton Gendron, 18, the suspect in the Buffalo grocery store shooting, touted what’s being called the ‘great replacement theory,’ a once-fringe racist idea that became a popular refrain among media figures like Carlson and Laura Ingraham of Fox News.
He wrote a document claiming white Americans were at risk of being ‘replaced’ by people of color because of immigration and higher birthrates – which led to authorities to declare the shooting to be racially motivated.
Thirteen people were shot and 10 died in Saturday’s attack. Eleven of the people shot were black.
Carlson denounced Gendron’s document on his show on Monday night, calling it ‘crazy’ and the product of a ‘diseased mind.’
‘The document is not recognizably left-wing or right-wing, it’s not really political at all. The document is crazy. It’s the product of a diseased and inorganized [sic] mind,’ he said.
In his remarks in Buffalo, the president also pushed Congress to pass stricter gun control laws – a call that may be in vain. He asked lawmakers to take legislative steps to bar those with mental illness from acquiring weapon.
‘We can keep assault weapons off our streets. We’ve done it before. I didn’t want to pass the crime bill last time and violence went down. Shootings went down. You can’t prevent people from being radicalized to violence. We can address the relentless exploitation of the Internet to recruit and mobilize terrorism,’ he said in his remarks.
Biden has previously asked lawmakers to require new background checks for gun buyers and ban military-style ‘assault’ weapons and large-capacity ammunition magazines.
But Democrats don’t have enough votes to pass them, particularly in the 50-50 Senate.
‘You know as well as I it takes 60 votes on anything controversial and that is controversial. So we’re kind of stuck where we are at the time being,’ Democratic Senator Dick Durbin of Illinois said. ‘We’re realists. We know where we are. It’ll take an election to change.’
Other mass shootings have sparked no legislation action.
And Biden conceded there’s not much more he can do with executive action.
‘Not much on executive action, I’ve got to convince the Congress that we should go back to what I passed years ago. I mean, I’m gonna try. I’m gonna try,’ he told reporters before he left Buffalo.
He conceded it was ‘going to be very difficult.’
During their stop in Buffalo, Joe and Jill Biden laid flowers at the Tops Market Memorial, the place of Saturday’s mass shooting, before they went to a private, closed-door meeting with family members of the 10 victims;
Jill Biden carries a large bouquet of white flowers as she walks hand-in-hand with President Joe Biden to the memorial site
President Joe Biden and first lady Jill Biden visit the scene of the shooting at a Buffalo grocery store; the first couple left flowers at the memorial site
Payton Gendron talks with his attorney during his arraignment in Buffalo City Court
The first couple were silent and the mood was somber as they paid their respects.
The Bidens held hands as they walked from the presidential limo to the makeshift memorial site. Jill Biden, dressed in black, carried a large bouquet of white flowers.
They bowed their heads at the memorial, which was decorated with balloons, stuffed animals, flowers, candles, and homemade signs.
Authorities say suspect Payton Gendron, 18, carried out an act of ‘racially motivated violent extremism.’ He faces and was charged with one count of murder and officials said they would weigh additional charges in the coming days.