Tucker Carlson’s big holiday treat for Fox Nation subscribers was a slew of fear-mongering and transphobic comments from Libs Of TikTok creator Chaya Raichik, who appeared for the first time on camera on Carlson’s Fox Nation show, and called the LGBTQ community a “cult” and pushed more bogus grooming claims about trans people.
Raichik’s comments came near the end of her hour-long interview on Carlson’s daytime program on the Fox News streaming platform. It follwed a discussion about the “intel” Raichik claimed to have gathered on the kind of gender-affirming care offered to trans kids at Children’s National Hospital in Washington D.C. That had happened back in August — around the same time Boston Children’s Hospital faced a deluge of threats following misleading info shared by Libs of TikTok and other right-wing outlets — with Raichik claiming her surreptitiously recorded calls with two telephone operators at Children’s National proved the facility was giving hysterectomies to trans teenagers.
Children’s National quickly and easily debunked the calls, first noting that the two people Raichik spoke with were not actually people who “deliver care to our patients.” Additionally, a hospital spokesperson said, “We do not and have never performed gender-affirming hysterectomies for anyone under the age of 18.”
Nevertheless, the calls got a ton of play in conservative media circles, and Carlson was still fawning over them during his new interview with Raichik. “I assume the person who said that is not like a serial killer, or not an evil person,” Carlson said of the phone operators Raichik recorded, “but that’s so evil. What is going on here, do you have any theories?”
In response, Raichik said, “The LGBTQ community has become this cult and it’s so captivating, and it pulls people in so strongly, unlike anything we’ve ever seen. And they brainwash people to join and they convince them of all of these things, and it’s really, really hard to get out of it.”
What followed was a discussion about gender-affirming care, which Raichik and Carlson reframed as a kind of sterilization based on this false belief that hospitals are providing procedures like hysterectomies to teenagers and children. The claim contradicts established guidelines from the World Professional Association for Transgender Health, which advise against gender-affirming surgery for children and adolescents. Such surgeries are somewhat rare even among adult transgender patients, and almost unheard of for children and minors. Medical guidelines advise prioritizing supportive care and work with mental health professionals for younger children, and the option to explore the use of puberty blockers for adolescents under the guidance of medical professionals.
Raichik also claimed that parents of trans or non-binary children were being fed “false information” from doctors and psychologists about gender identity issues and care, and cast doubt on the high risk of suicide for LGBTQ youth.
Additionally, Raichik leaned into the grooming panic conservatives have used to denigrate LGBTQ people. While talking about parents who provide things like love and support to their trans or non-binary children, she said, “There are a lot of parents who let their kids do this, and they promote it, and they encourage it. And there are a lot of parents who are obviously grooming their kids into doing this.”
Later, Carlson lobbed a softball to Raichik, asking if she saw a “spiritual component to any of this.” While Raichik demurred at first, Carlson happily jumped in to say he certainly did, adding that none of it made any sense to him. Raichik agreed with that, and said flatly, “I think sometimes, the simplest answer is they’re just evil. They’re bad people. They’re just evil people and they want to groom kids. They’re recruiting.”