Tucker Carlson defends former colleague Megyn Kelly amid Trudeau blackface controversy
Fox News host Tucker Carlson on Thursday defended his former colleague Megyn Kelly while slamming media coverage over a blackface controversy involving Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.
Carlson juxtaposed a response from CNN’s Don Lemon to Trudeau’s apology with the response made by the media to Kelly when she made controversial remarks about people wearing blackface in 2018.
At the time, Kelly said it was “OK” when she was growing up to wear blackface “as long as you dressed up as a character.” She later apologized, but NBC still abruptly canceled her show.
Carlson was pushing back on Trudeau for broaching privilege in his apology following unearthed photos show him wearing blackface years ago.
The Fox News host then played a clip of Lemon on Wednesday expressing how impressed he was by Trudeau’s apology.
“When someone apologies, wow,” Lemon said in reacting to Trudeau’s apology for the incidents. “We don’t often see that here, especially a world leader who’s saying, ‘I should have known better and I’m sorry.’ You could go about that however you want but to me, that does mean a lot.”
In his first apology for the incidents, Trudeau said he “always acknowledged that I come from a place of privilege, but I now need to acknowledge that that comes with a massive blind spot.”
“What a difference a year makes. If you can think back, all the way back, to when Megyn Kelly of NBC found herself under attack in pretty much the same way. The difference was that Megyn Kelly never wore blackface,” Carlson explained.
“She wouldn’t do that. She’s not Justin Trudeau. She just made the mistake of not seeming quite offended enough in a TV segment by certain Halloween costumes. For that crime, Don Lemon told us, she must be destroyed,” he continued.
On Oct. 23, 2018, as Kelly’s remarks were dominating headlines, Lemon said in a handoff from lead-in Chris Cuomo that Kelly needed to educate herself on being in a position of privilege.
“Megyn is 47 years old, she’s our age. There has never been a time in that 47 years that blackface has been acceptable,” Lemon said on Oct. 23, 2018. He also questioned “how much diversity” Kelly had on her NBC staff “because people would have informed her.”
“I think people really need to educate themselves about this particular issue, and we need to realize in this culture that some people do have a privilege where they don’t have to think about it,” Lemon continued.
“Educate yourself. Learn that maybe you are in a position of privilege and you have not been aware of it for 47 years,” he also added.
Carlson on Thursday asked if Lemon had a “change of heart.”
“Suddenly, Don Lemon went from that, ‘I wonder how much diversity she has on her staff,’ to ‘I’m so glad that Justin is sorry.'” Did Don Lemon have a change of heart? Is he now a forgiving man? Or could it be that because Justin Trudeau is a powerful leader on the left, he gets a pass no matter what he does.”
Kelly jumped from Fox News to NBC News in January 2017.