In response to the murders of unarmed Black Americans like George Floyd, Breonna Taylor and countless others, people across the country are having more substantive conversations about the racist violence against people of color that's pervaded in this country since its inception.
Even adults often fail to grasp the subtler and systemic ways racism pervades American society, so it can be especially daunting to discuss this centuries-long legacy with young children.
In an effort to help parents tackle these discussions with their own children, CNN held a town hall starring characters from the beloved PBS-turned-HBO children's series Sesame Street.
One of the standout moments in the town hall was a discussion between Elmo and his father Louie, who said to his son:
"Across the country, people of color ― especially in the Black community ― are being treated unfairly because of how they look, their culture, race and who they are. What we are seeing is people saying, 'Enough is enough.' They want to end racism."
Far-Right Fox News host Tucker Carlson was not a fan.
In the same week that he warned his viewers that Black Lives Matter activists were out to get Americans, he began invoking the specter of "people trying to take over your country." Tucker railed against the town hall, and the message he believed it sent, implying that it was an excoriation of White people.
Tucker: The rise of left-wing rage mobs in America youtu.be
Tucker played the clip of Elmo speaking with his dad, which he called "relentless propaganda."
Tucker—who his own well documented history of racist remarks—then said:
"Got that, Bobby? America is a very bad place and it's your fault. So no matter what happens, no matter what they do to you when you grow up, you have no right to complain. That's the message and it starts very young.'
He went on to say that specials like these manifested in the recent firing of a Los Angeles soccer player over social media posts from his wife. He described the post as "criticism online of the looters she was watching wreck Minneapolis."
In reality, her words were far more than mere criticism. The posts, many of which were written in Serbian, encouraged people to "kill those s***s," said things like "Black Nikes matter" and referred to protestors as "disgusting cattle."
Carlson said the United States was becoming North Korea because private companies were firing employees over posts from their immediate family. And it's...Sesame Street's fault...?
The diatribe wasn't received well online.
@ndrew_lawrence "Bobby, you will have no right to complain, just like me. I have been persecuted so terribly that I… https://t.co/kmVW6tSBdy— Never Assume a Can Opener (@Never Assume a Can Opener)1591748096.0
@ndrew_lawrence @mmfa Just change the name to The White Power Hour and be honest with Americans on what the show is.— Jeremy Harris (@Jeremy Harris)1591747808.0
@ndrew_lawrence I love how perfectly he illustrates what he heard right after we all heard what was actually said. What a horrible person.— Merrill Whatley (@Merrill Whatley)1591748824.0
@ndrew_lawrence Tucker Carlson takes gaslighting to new level, attacking Elmo and Sesame Street… Why is Tucker so a… https://t.co/6vdNuXrNvZ— anache (@anache)1591750337.0
@ndrew_lawrence He can't even fathom the idea that a black kid might be watching that— Hannah at Home | BLM (@Hannah at Home | BLM)1591747920.0
People were quick to mock Carlson for his fear mongering.
@ndrew_lawrence Tune in tomorrow for Carlson's rant denouncing Mister Rogers and King Friday as agents of the liberal agenda.— SplinterVII (@SplinterVII)1591747836.0
@ndrew_lawrence Elmo’s target audience is 3-5 years old but somehow it goes right over TC’s head.— APJ (@APJ)1591748982.0
I think today on Sesame Street, Elmo should take a knee during the National Anthem just so we can watch Tucker Carl… https://t.co/gkQhnd6GOs— Liddle’ Savage (@Liddle’ Savage)1591785942.0
People look forward to the next time Tucker unironically complains about an abundance of so-called snowflakes.