"The Mystery" of Tucker Carlson

I enjoyed Lyz Lenz's interesting article about Tucker Carlson's alleged descent from reasonable conservative to ranting race warrior.

He has a large platform and all the money and privilege. Who is censoring him? And by that token, conservatives have won. They have the White House and congress. So much winning, right? But according to Carlson, censorship is everywhere. Liberals are suppressing free speech in America by saying they are offended by everything, he tells me. …The tech guy at Google, he says, who was fired for exercising his free speech. Carlson is referring to the ex-Google employee James Damore who wrote posts on an internal company message board attributing psychological differences between men and women as the reason there was a gender gap at Google. Damore, Carlson argues, was fired for exercising his free speech. He was the epitome of diversity. And he got fired in the name of diversity. America, what a country. It's totally Orwellian.

And did I know that biologists have proven there are only two genders? Just two. And no high school teacher in the world would tell me otherwise. But it makes liberals mad when you say the truth. Get a biologist to say he's wrong and he'll listen but until then. No.

I point out that sexuality and gender are inherently different and maybe he's conflating the two. "Look biological reality is… super deep and exists apart from whatever social construct you're buying into…and that comes with all kinds of physical consequences," he explains, explaining nothing.

The low-key fulcrum of the piece is a sentiment attributed to Carlson–consequences are censorship–which implicitly answers the mystery. He experiences criticism as silencing and you can't really get deeper into that sort of thing without treading on ground considered unethical by practicing psychologists.

Lenz gets a bunch of former colleagues and editors to sigh about him, though:

[Tina] Brown, who noted crisply in an efficient, six-minute phone interview, "I really think Tucker is better than that."

Going on on a limb here, but bear with me a moment: what if he isn't?

More important, what if he wasn't? The profile cites decades-old work that suggests Carlson was a segregationist from the outset, and just last night he was on Fox News complaining about the desegregation of the U.S. military. He says he hasn't changed. Maybe he's right.