Tucker Carlson Debates College Student Who Supported Removal of American Flag From Campus

November 22, 2016

Fox News anchor Tucker Carlson challenged Hampshire College student Daniel Vogel on Monday night when he attempted to defend the removal of the American flag from the school's campus.

The Massachusetts college initially lowered the American flag to half-staff two weeks ago after Donald Trump defeated Hillary Clinton in the presidential election, which offended some members of the community. Two days later, unnamed students burned the flag the night before Veterans Day. While it was replaced and flown again at half-staff shortly afterwards, Hampshire College President Jonathan Lash announced Saturday that all flags, including American flags, would be banned from the campus.

Carlson read part of Lash's official statement on no American flags being flown on campus.

"Getting rid of the flag will enable us to instead focus on efforts on addressing racist, misogynistic, Islamophobic, anti-immigrant, anti-Semitic, and anti-LBGTQ rhetoric and behaviors."

Carlson then introduced Vogel and confronted him on his belief that oppression is the result of groups like police officers and the U.S. military that use the American flag.

"Now the obvious point is if the police and the Army were to go away, sensitive college students like you would be eaten alive," Carlson said, asking the student to name a fairer country than the United States.

Vogel rolled his eyes after Carlson's comment and responded to his question.

"There isn't really a country I'd rather be tried for a felony in. It's not really about me, you know," Vogel said. "It's about black people and people of color in this country who, if they were tried for a felony, are much more likely than me to be put in prison for that."

Carlson pushed Vogel to name a fairer country for black people to get justice and asked if he had enough perspective of the world to prove all cops are bad. Vogel responded by naming countries in which the U.S. military is involved but never addressed his original assertion that cops are oppressive or whether there is a fairer country for blacks to get justice than the U.S.

Carlson then asked Vogel why he and other affluent college students are always the ones critical of the American flag and calling it "evil."  The cost to attend Hampshire College is $62,000 per year, Carlson noted.

"None of the workers who you claim to be representing ever say that. You never see anybody at a trade school burning the American flag. Have you noticed that? I'm not making this up in my mind, am I?" Carlson asked.

Vogel insinuated there are trade schools that burn flags, saying the media is just more likely to pick up a story from rich kids because of their access to the media. He then talked about income inequality in the United States and defended Hampshire College for its financial aid package that some students receive.

"What's the median family income in this country? Do you know?" Carlson asked.

"The median family income in this country, I do not know," Vogel responded.

Carlson said it was much less than the $62,000 price tag that Vogel pays each year for tuition, room, and board. He then asked Vogel whether he realized how fortunate he was to benefit from his parents' success.

Vogel acknowledged that he understood how privileged he was, but said he must recognize that his parents' wealth came from slavery and the exploitation of others.

"The land that I live on was taken from native peoples, and the land that I live on back in Portland, back home, was taken from native peoples. It's the wealth of the people who have been oppressed and who have had things stolen from them that allow me to go to this institution," Vogel said.

Carlson followed up by asking the college student why he would consume $62,000 in "blood money," as Vogel described, to attend college and advocate for burning the flag rather than work with the laborers or pick apples in Washington State.

"I very much disagree that removing the flag was a not useful thing. It got me on your show, correct?" Vogel said. "It's a useful tactic in terms of getting voices out there."