Conservative pundit Ben Shapiro has accused the mainstream media of misinterpreting the “great replacement theory” in an attempt to blame Republicans for Saturday’s mass shooting in Buffalo, New York.
The suspected shooter is nowhere near the mainstream of American politics, but neither is the media.
WHAT HE SAID
In a series of tweets Monday, Shapiro argued that liberal journalists and commentators are conflating everyday Republicans’ “skepticism about illegal immigration” with a fringe, white supremacist conspiracy theory that allegedly motivated the Buffalo gunman.
If you want to be accurate about the Great Replacement Theory, it is a conspiracy theory about Jewish elites shipping in minorities to change the racial stock of a country. That is precisely what the Buffalo shooter says. And it is echoed by neither political party.
— Ben Shapiro (@benshapiro) May 16, 2022
“The Great Replacement Theory IS racist. It is also not the theory that demographic voting patterns matter — a nostrum accepted by everyone in both parties — or the theory that amnesty for illegal immigration might affect those voting patterns,” Shapiro said in response to liberals accusing conservatives, such as Fox News host Tucker Carlson, of pushing the racist theory.
- In others tweets, Shapiro, a Daily Wire founder and podcaster, resurfaced several instances of mainstream journalists and politicians making the case that the increasingly multiracial makeup of America would be a boon for the Democratic Party.
- “As [President] Obama said Tuesday in deep-red Texas, they expect demographics in that state — and the rest of the country — to tip the electorate their way,” Politico reported in July 2012 about “the growing population of non-whites” that were helping then-presidential candidate Barack Obama make up for his GOP challenger Mitt Romney’s polling advantage with white Americans.
- “Demographics are destiny,” Maurice Carroll, director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute, told Politico at the time.
In 2004’s “The Emerging Democratic Majority,” progressive political scientists John Judis and Ruy Teixeira argued that modern Democrats are the “party of the transition from urban industrialism to a new postindustrial metropolitan order in which men and women play equal roles and in which white America is supplanted by multiracial, multiethnic America.”
The Buffalo shooter did not say a single thing about Tucker Carlson and wrote that he hated Fox News.
By contrast, the congressional baseball shooter who almost killed Steve Scalise declared his love for Rachel Maddow in writings.
Did Rachel Maddow almost kill Scalise?
— Greg Price (@greg_price11) May 15, 2022
According to the Times, the racist and antisemitic ideas espoused by Payton S. Gendron, the 18-year-old Buffalo shooting suspect, have in recent months “become commonplace in the Republican Party — spoken aloud at congressional hearings, echoed in Republican campaign advertisements and embraced by a growing array of right-wing candidates and media personalities.”
- “We know that there’s tremendous mainstreaming of the ‘great replacement’ narrative by politicians and cable news pundits like Tucker Carlson,” American University professor Cynthia Miller-Idriss told the Post.
- Miller-Idriss did acknowledge that Gendron’s radicalization appeared to have occurred by way of his exposure “through anonymous online spaces and not necessarily through mainstream media.”
Ten people were killed and three were wounded Saturday afternoon at Tops Friendly Market after Gendron opened fire, police said.
- The suspect drove 200 miles from his home in Conklin, New York to livestream and carry out the shooting, according to law enforcement.
- In a hate-filled 180-page manifesto, Gendron allegedly decried low birth rates among whites, which he said would “ultimately result in the complete racial and cultural replacement of the European people.”
- Eleven of the victims were black, while two were white.