The Kanye West Tucker Carlson didn’t want his audience to see

Fox News host Tucker Carlson went to great lengths to emphasize to his viewers last week how well-rounded Kanye West-born musician Ye was.

Presenting the first of two shows focusing on a lengthy interview with Ye, Carlson praised the artist wearing a “White Lives Matter” shirt for Paris Fashion Week.

“The enemies of his ideas branded West, as they have for years, mentally ill,” Carlson told his audience Thursday night. “Too crazy to be taken seriously. Look away. Ignore him. He’s mentally ill. There’s nothing to see here. Ye’s rhetoric might be ‘shocking’,” Carlson said, something that is “often used as ammunition against him in the battle for influence on the minds of young Americans. And this battle is intense.

He challenged his viewers: “Is West crazy? You can judge for yourself by looking at what we are about to show you.

Carlson then showed excerpts from a lengthy interview — an interview that, as footage obtained by Vice News reveals, included much more controversial comments than those aired on Fox News. The Ye Carlson wanted viewers to see may well be judged differently than the Ye Carlson actually interviewed.

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Even in what Carlson showed there were questionable comments. Ye spent a full minute raising questions about Josh Kushner’s (brother of Donald Trump’s son-in-law, Jared) investment in Kim Kardashian’s clothing line — a riff that seemed to fit in a different context given the Ye’s subsequent anti-Semitic comment on Twitter about going “death con 3” on “JEWISH PEOPLE”. He claimed he had been warned that supporting Trump could result in his death.

What was excluded, according to the Vice footage, was more disconcerting. Ye claimed that he would rather his children learn Hanukkah than Kwanzaa because “at least it would come with some financial engineering.” His claim that “professional actors” had been “placed in my home to sexualize my children.” He said he trusted Latinos more than “certain other business people” – a vague descriptor he used for “being safe”. Ye also told Carlson that he had “visions that God gives me, again and again, about building communities and how to build these communities of free, kinetic, fully kinetic energy.”

In both the clips obtained by Vice and what aired, Carlson mostly nodded with Ye’s comment. There is no obvious effort to question Ye’s claims or to express uncertainty about continuing the interview.

What emerges from the fuller context provided by the Vice segments, in reality, is that Carlson wasn’t really interested in interviewing Ye or presenting his point of view to his audience. Instead, it was that Carlson wanted to present a very specific version of Ye to his viewers, a Ye that mirrored Carlson’s rhetoric about race and politics and didn’t go much further.

As Vice’s Anna Merlan points out, Ye’s admission that he had been vaccinated against the coronavirus — something Carlson repeatedly undermined for more than a year — was left out of what aired. Carlson, it seems, wanted his audience to see Ye say particular things and not worry about Ye’s rationality. So he and his team cooked up two days of shows that did just that.

The interview was immediately cropped after Ye was suspended from social media for his comments about Jewish people. On his Monday night show, however, Carlson didn’t talk about it. Instead, he invited conservative commentator Candace Owens to discuss the initial trigger for his interview with Ye: those “White Lives Matter” shirts. Owens wore one too, invited the same day by Ye to participate in the stunt – which Ye compared to standing in front of tanks in Tiananmen Square.

“The worst thing you can be in this country, far from what they tell you, I would say two things,” Owens told Carlson. “Above all, a black child in its mother’s womb. This is the most dangerous place for a black child. The second thing is a straight white man.

This is the message Carlson wants his audience to hear. He wants his viewers to hear that their sense of victimhood is valid and that Black Lives Matter is about their own subjugation, not the systemic constraints of race. He wants to feature Candace Owens and Ye, black celebrities, as the faces of such messages.

His interview with Ye hit the desired points, even though he was loaded with the musician’s other objectively eyebrow-raising offerings. So he cut them off and then insisted that Ye didn’t say anything at all.

In one of the clips obtained by Vice, Ye offers a strange analogy.

“Think of us judging each other on how we could speak in white, it would be like, you know, a Jewish person judging another Jewish person on the quality of their dancing or something,” he said. -he declares. He paused, saying he was worried people would get angry about the comment. “I probably want to edit that.”

Carlson waved his hand irrevocably. “It’s done,” he said. You can rest assured that Carlson would be wise about what he did and didn’t show on air.

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