There are calls for the United Services Automobile Association (USAA) to stop advertising with Fox News following controversy over the comments by its anchor Tucker Carlson about the country’s highest-ranking military officer.
Carlson has taken to the airwaves this week to denounce Gen. Mark Milley, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, after he told lawmakers that military personnel should be “widely read” and this included learning about issues such as Critical Race Theory.
Carlson is among those who criticize the theory which outlines how race and racism intersect with politics, culture, and law. The issue has become a hot topic for many Republicans, who along with other critics, say that the theory promotes division.
Following Milley’s comments to the House Armed Services Committee, which included him saying how he wanted to “understand white rage,” Carlson said on Thursday that the general was “not just a pig, he’s stupid.”
Carlson doubled down on these comments on Friday, saying his comments were “disgraceful” as well as “disqualifying.”
However, people with links to the military have appealed to the USAA, which provides financial services to personnel and the families of those who serve or have served in the U.S. Armed Forces, to stop advertising on Carlson’s show.
The group Veterans for Responsible Leadership shared the clip of Carlson’s monologue, adding the message, “So, @USAA, is this who you advertise with? Asking for 18 million friends.”
Travis Akers, a service member who once called for military bases and installations to boycott Fox News, tweeted to his 153,000 followers: “Please accept this as my formal notice that you have until the end of June to cease all advertising during any @TuckerCarlson programming.”
He added that otherwise, “I will move my insurance policies and accounts to a competitor that does not financially support Carlson.”
This message was retweeted by Tomi T Ahonen, who wrote: “Please boycott USAA for supporting Tucker Carlson.”
Meanwhile, executive director of the Lincoln Project, Fred Wellman, who served in the U.S. Army for 22 years, tweeted: “I can’t for the life of me accept that @USAA still sponsors Tucker Carlson or even Fox News at all.”
Kristofer Goldsmith, founder of the group High Ground Veterans, tweeted: “Tucker Carlson has made attacking individuals in the military, including those of lower enlisted ranks, a major theme of 2021.
“They face endless targeted attacks and harassment from his followers every day thereafter. It’s time for @USAA to #DumpTucker,” he added.
“How much do they have to smear the US military that you represent before enough is enough? Is profit more important than the honor of those you claim to support?” he said, adding, “enough is enough.”
Newsweek has contacted Fox News and USAA for comment.