The Real Reason Dog Whistles Are Racist
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A lot of things are accused of being racist these days. Tucker Carlson’s new book Ship of Fools, which I reviewed in Taki’s Magazine, lists, among much else, ice cream truck songs, Halloween costumes, Milk, Dr. Seuss books, tanning, science, Shakespeare, Bitcoin, Wendy’s, pornography, Lucky Charms cereal, being on time, white babies, the Oscars, art history, and background checks.

But few objects are more associated with racism than the dog whistle. For example, Tucker Carlson is constantly being accused of dog whistle racism. From Esquire, for instance:

Tucker Carlson Attacked the Idea of Diversity in His Latest Hate-Filled Rant

It’s not the first time the Fox News host has used white nationalist talking points.


“Diversity” is second only to “tolerance” as the most palatable and completely un-radical social justice goal. It literally just means sharing space—a school, a workplace, a nation—with people who are in some way different from you. And who could have a problem with that in America, a country that holds the melting pot among its foundational myths? Tucker Carlson, that’s who. On Friday, the Fox News host gave a monologue that traded dog whistle racism for bullhorn racism.

You may think the well-worn association of racism and dog whistles is just a cliched metaphor, but the dog whistle’s racist roots go back to the beginning. You see, the dog whistle was invented in 1876 by Saint Darwin’s Evil Cousin, Sir Francis “Eugenics” Galton.

That’s why racists are always dog-whistling.

From Wikipedia:

A dog whistle (also known as silent whistle or Galton’s whistle) is a type of whistle that emits sound in the ultrasonic range, which people cannot hear but some other animals can, including dogs and domestic cats, and is used in their training. It was invented in 1876 by Francis Galton and is mentioned in his book Inquiries into Human Faculty and its Development,[1] in which he describes experiments to test the range of frequencies that could be heard by various animals, such as a house cat.

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