For years, the conservative Fox News network has offered like-minded Republican viewers a respite from the so-called liberal media—often at the expense of facts.
If its so-called news coverage wasn't questionable enough, the rantings of its primetime opinion hosts as well as many of its guests are lambasted by critics who call out the show for its nightly promotion of white supremacy and its consistent focus on minor issues like the relevance of Dr. Seuss books.
This came to a boil when liberal Fox News panelist Christopher Hahn upended a segment during an appearance with former Trump campaign spokeswoman Mercedes Schlapp.
Hahn called out white nationalist Fox News host Tucker Carlson for promoting hysteria over "vaccine passports"—an initiative from the Biden administration for the private sector to create digital proof of vaccination for businesses to use at their own discretion as they slowly begin to reopen in the face of a pandemic that killed over half a million Americans.
Though proof of vaccination is required for public school attendance, and often for sports and military service as well, Carlson and other Republicans insisted that a vaccination passport was a means toward government control. Carlson described them as "Orwellian."
Hahn called Carlson and Schlapp conspiracy theorists for their diatribes condemning the possible passports.
Mercedes Schlapp: "You're not going to call Tucker Carlson a conspiracy theorist!" Chris Hahn: "He is and you are!… https://t.co/3rwKkAHCEL— Justin Baragona (@Justin Baragona) 1617119577.0
After Schlapp claimed there were "constitutional issues" brought about by the "troubling" development, Hahn said:
"The private sector is driving it, not the government. But Republicans like everything else they've done during this horrible crisis we've been through, are pushing these conspiracy theories that the government is trying to control you, which is causing some of their followers not to get vaccinated."
"People like Tucker Carlson, like Jim Jordan, like Mercedes right here now casting doubt on the fact that the government—or trying to convince people that the government is somehow watching you. That is very irresponsible!"
"I am not gonna take this from you. You're not gonna call me a conspiracy theorist. You're not gonna call Tucker Carlson a conspiracy theorist!"
An emphatic Hahn retorted:
"He is! He is and you are! ... You're a grifter. This is ridiculous."
Schlapp may have been livid, but the internet was cheering Hahn on.
Watching conservatives melt down when you call them exactly what they are is as good as ice cream https://t.co/onPwRtCQnc— ロッス (@ロッス) 1617135889.0
Chris Hahn is awesome! https://t.co/f6CELge8rn— Lucky Charms Mom 🛎 (@Lucky Charms Mom 🛎) 1617135037.0
Hahaha he's right. https://t.co/kDqJHZFtBV— Jason S. (@Jason S.) 1617133562.0
I like this Hahn guy. Hope to see more of this https://t.co/5lvG5rxmur— still masking (@still masking) 1617133287.0
More people like this guy need to be on Fox News to call out the BS. He is 100% correct. https://t.co/u089IOoaut— Mike Berman (@Mike Berman) 1617131252.0
👏🏽I can’t find the lie in @ChristopherHahn ‘s assessments. https://t.co/vtRlktIZqV— Ms (@Ms) 1617135199.0
Others have called out Fox News for fueling vaccine skepticism as well.
"There is a nightly drumbeat on Fox News—specifically from Tucker Carlson—that is undermining our best chance to ge… https://t.co/A2YDSUnw5i— All In with Chris Hayes (@All In with Chris Hayes) 1616292000.0
All last year, they told their viewers the virus was just a hoax, and now they’re telling their viewers to be skept… https://t.co/9dX7uNFfaZ— Joe Walsh (@Joe Walsh) 1616251157.0
Why are Republicans so hesitant to get the vaccine? It miiiight be because Fox News keeps telling them not to trust… https://t.co/k9iUewi1Li— The Daily Show (@The Daily Show) 1616374860.0
The United States' new virus cases have seen alarming rises in past weeks. If vaccinations can't outpace new mutations of the virus as it spreads, it's a near-inevitability a variant will emerge that's strong enough to render the millions of vaccines implemented so far ineffective.
But you likely won't hear that on Fox News.