John Oliver has a strong message for Tucker Carlson: “F**k you.”
On Sunday’s “Last Week Tonight” the host tore into Fox News’ Carlson over his coverage of the George Floyd protests.
“Look: it’s been a truly brutal week, with protests across the country in response to the horrific killing of George Floyd at the hands of the Minneapolis Police. And there is clearly a lot to discuss here: How these protests are a response to a legacy of police misconduct both in Minneapolis and in the nation at large, and how that misconduct is in and of itself built on a legacy of white supremacy that prioritizes the comfort of white Americans over the safety of people of colour,” Oliver said, according to Vanity Fair. “There is so much to say here—some of it complicated, much of it all too clear. Or, you know, you could just go on TV, open up your mouth, and let this shit fall out.”
Oliver played a clip of Carlson condemning rioting, which has occurred in a number of U.S. cities, and comparing the demonstrations to the viral incident in Central Park involving a woman with an unleashed dog calling the police on a black birdwatcher.
“Ugly opinions, police brutality, officious birdwatchers, rude and entitled ladies walking their dogs in big-city parks—all of that is bad. But none of it is nearly as bad as what you just saw,” Carlson said in the clip.
“Okay, first: F**k you, Tucker,” Oliver responded. “That’s just a general point. Second, saying ‘officious birdwatcher’ is deeply offensive—because you’re either trying to both-sides that Central Park incident or insulting fans of this show, who proudly call themselves ‘officious birdwatchers.’ I am the ‘officious bird’; they are the ‘watchers.’ Keep their name out of your mouth.”
He continued, “People like Tucker love to venerate order at moments like this, and that’s easy to do when order in its current form is designed to benefit and protect you,” Oliver said. “But it’s hard to overstate how clearly we’ve been reminded lately of the hostility of our existing order toward black people who’ve been killed by police on the street, killed by police in their own home, killed by wannabe police in the street, and threatened with state violence while literally birding. Collectively, that has just got to be some brutality bingo right there.”
But Oliver wasn’t done there.
“And when ‘order’ results in you lying face-down on a lawn while your grandma stands between you and the police who have pulled their guns on you after you allegedly just rolled a stop sign,” he added. “I can see why being lectured on the importance of ‘order’ at the expense of all else is just not what you want to f**king hear right now!”
Oliver also blasted Donald Trump for a tweet in which he said, “When the looting starts, the shooting starts” by explaining the racist origins of the phrase.
“Set aside that when a man like Donald Trump uses the word ‘thugs,’ you know exactly what it’s code for. ‘When the looting starts, the shooting starts,’ is actually a quote from a notoriously racist 1960s Miami police chief,” Oliver explained. “And it is truly astounding how Donald Trump has managed to live 74 years with a remedial understanding of spelling, grammar, geography, science, civics nutrition, and child development, and yet he’s the f**king Library of Alexandria when it comes to racist maxims of the 20th century.”
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