Tucker Carlson's college yearbook contains apparent reference to Harvey Milk's murderer

Trinity College yearbook from 1991 lists Carlson as member of "Dan White Society" and "Jesse Helms Foundation"

By Zachary Petrizzo
Published April 24, 2021 9:00AM (UTC)
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Fox News host Tucker Carlson (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

A freshly resurfaced 1991 Trinity College yearbook featuring Fox News superstar Tucker Carlson listed him as part of the "Dan White Society," an organization affiliated with pushing an extreme anti-LGBTQ agenda. Another organization listed under Carlson's name in the yearbook was the "Jesse Helms Foundation," a reference to the arch-conservative former North Carolina senator, who for much of his career supported segregation.  

As for the "Dan White Society," that appears to refer to the disgruntled local politician who became infamous for shooting and killing San Francisco Mayor George Moscone and Supervisor Harvey Milk — the nation's first well-known openly gay elected official — in 1978. Carlson, who was born in San Francisco and spent his early childhood there, was nine years old at the time.

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The Wrap confirmed with Trinity College, a small liberal arts school in Hartford, Connecticut, that the yearbook images reproduced in numerous social media posts this week are authentic. "While I cannot speak to the yearbook process in 1991, current practice is that only a student's name, home state and/or country, and the student's major are listed with their photos," a Trinity College spokesperson told The Wrap

Trinity officials also told The Wrap that they could find no evidence suggesting that the Dan White Society was an actual organization affiliated with the college. Snopes reports it could not find evidence that the Jesse Helms Foundation was a school-endorsed group either. The organizations' names could simply have been jokes in dubious taste. If they ever existed, they were likely unofficial or outside the college. 

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Fox News didn't return Salon's request for comment on this story. 

During a Tuesday night segment on his show, Carlson attempted to go on defense, calling out Washington Post media reporter Erik Wemple for seeking to contact former college classmates of Carlson's. "Jeff Bezos had one of his minions, a mentally unbalanced middle-aged man called Erik Wemple, pull out our dusty college yearbook and call around and see if we'd done anything naughty at the age of 19," Carlson declared. 

"That sounds like fun. Let us know if you hear any good stories," Carlson added. "But before Bezos drops any more of his billions on opposition research, he should know that it will not affect any election outcome. This is a news show, not a political campaign. No one here is running for anything or plans to." 

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Wemple declined to comment on the matter when contacted by Salon. 


Zachary Petrizzo

Zachary Petrizzo is a staff writer at Salon. He previously covered politics at Mediaite and The Daily Dot. Follow him on Twitter @ZTPetrizzo. Send him tips: zpetrizzo@salon.com

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Brief Fox News Harvey Milk Jesse Helms Media Trinity College Tucker Carlson