Bias Watch

Tucker Carlson accuses hockey team of supporting “child sacrifice”

Tucker Carlson, NHL, Fox News
Tucker Carlson Photo: Fox News screenshot

Fox News’s most popular host Tucker Carlson says the National Hockey League (NHL) is “promoting child sacrifice” because one team’s Twitter account mentioned an ancient Mexican culture that respects “third gender” individuals.

Carlson’s claim occurred Monday night while he discussed James Reimer, a goalie with the San Jose Sharks. Reimer refused to wear a Pride-themed jersey with a rainbow-colored logo during the team’s Pride night last Saturday because, he claimed, it conflicted with his Christian religious beliefs.

During the team’s Pride night game, the team used its Twitter account to post “information and facts about LGBTQIA+ topics” to “serve as a reminder that there are issues more important than goals, highlights, and wins.”

In one of its tweets, the team wrote, “Worldwide, gender diversity is seen far differently than that in the Western World or as you may know it.” In a follow-up tweet, the team continued, “The muxe gender is a respected third gender in Zapotec cultures in Oaxaca, Mexico that has existed for centuries.”

Indeed, Muxes remain a respected and reviled minority in Mexican culture with a rich cultural history.

But Carlson – a long-time fan of the man who murdered gay politician Harvey Milk – sidestepped this to accuse the Sharks of posting “true lunacy about gender.”

“The Zapotecs who lived in southern Mexico were known for a lot more than three genders,” Carlson said. “Like almost every or every meso-American culture, human sacrifice was at the very center of their world. They put children to death as offerings to their gods.”

He then quoted Greg Price, the communications director of the right-wing political group the State Freedom Caucus Network, who said, “The San Jose Sharks want us to take cultural advice from an ancient Mexican civilization that participated in child sacrifice.”

Carlson added, “What the hell is going on in the NHL? And why are owners doing this? And how long will fans stick with it? They just want to watch hockey. Scary.”

Muxe – derived from the Spanish word for woman, mujer – refers to a person assigned male at birth who lives her life as a woman and is sometimes seen as part of a third gender. The term is specific to the Zapotec cultures of southern Mexico, according to anthropologist and former California State University Chico Professor Beverly Chiñas.

The Zapotecs haven’t practiced human sacrifice since 1520, but that doesn’t matter to Carlson. He is simply furthering the right-wing claim that LGBTQ+ inclusive cultures are a threat to children’s safety. It’s a claim he has made repeatedly, stoking violence against LGBTQ+ supportive teachers and death threats against children’s hospitals.

It’s also worth noting that, in a 2020 slander case, Fox News’s own lawyers said that Carlson is not a journalist and that his words should not be “taken by reasonable listeners as factual pronouncements.”

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