In a rambling monologue on his show this week, conservative podcaster Steven Crowder revealed that he has been going through a divorce since 2021. He suggested that Candace Owens of the Daily Wire attempted to use this information against him. He also implied that one spouse shouldn’t be able to get a divorce if the other objects.
Crowder said that he initially wanted to keep the split private. He made it sound as if he only went public because people were trying to use the information against him.
“Many other people knew about this behind the scenes. Some—not all—but some of them in positions of power, influence, leverage, knew of this. They also knew that the safety of my children included keeping it private,” he said.
“So if you’re familiar with the idea of extortion, then you know the feeling well. Now some of these threats were so thinly veiled that I’m frankly surprised you didn’t all guess immediately.”
Crowder then played a clip of Owens saying that he “has a lot going on” and asking her audience not “to condemn him, but to pray for him.”
Owens said that she wasn’t sure it was her place to say anything more.
“Maybe if I feel in further defense, something should be said, or maybe if I feel the public has a right to understand certain circumstances,” she said.
After the video ended, Crowder suggested that others also tried to use his divorce against him. (It’s not clear if his divorce has been finalized.)
“If you’re asking yourself, ‘Hey, did X person or did Y person know?’ the answer’s likely ‘yes,’ which will be made alarmingly clear as this process of discovery continues,” he said.
Now Owens says she’s contacted a defamation attorney.
“I will not take that lightly,” Owens said of Crowder’s suggestion that she “extorted” him.
“I am not going to take somebody going onto his platform and alleging that I either harassed, threatened, or did anything that would put his children at risk,” Owens said. “That is very serious stuff that he is saying.”
Owens said she’s sending Crowder a cease-and-desist letter and demanding a “full-throated retraction.”
She also said that she deduced that he was getting divorced because he was acting “crazy.” Owens tweeted that the clip he used on his show was from much earlier, noting it was her response to him attacking the Daily Wire by publicly revealing the terms of the contract it offered him.
Owens also invited Crowder’s wife on her show, which some feel was a bridge too far.
“I was with you until you invited his wife on your show,” wrote one. “Going after the person commentator to commentator is fair game. Inserting yourself into their marriage and subsequent divorce is out of line and beneath you.”
Their fans are picking sides. Their detractors are simply enjoying the drama.
“Why is conservative media literally a game of thrones?” one observer noted.
Other people focused on Crowder seemingly taking issue with his wife being able to initiate divorce proceedings without his permission.
“My then-wife decided that she didn’t want to be married anymore and in the state of Texas that is completely permitted,” he said.
At another point, he said children need both parents, but lamented that “in today’s legal system, my beliefs don’t matter. In Texas divorce is permitted when one party wants it period.”
His comments left people feeling disturbed.
“Crowder really spent a full minute of this video implying it should have been ILLEGAL for his wife to divorce him,” @catlovingcommie tweeted.
His remarks also put some of Crowder’s previous statements about divorce into perspective.
“Oh, it’s no-fault divorce, which, by the way, means that in many of these states if a woman cheats on you, she leaves, she takes half. So it’s not no-fault, it’s the fault of the man,” he said last summer, adding, “There need to be changes to marital laws, and I’m not even talking about same-sex marriage. … I’m talking about divorce laws, talking about alimony laws, talking about child support laws.”
Crowder’s views on divorce weren’t the only thing about the clip that left people feeling unsettled.
“Having a gun literally within arms reach the whole time is the darkest part of the video,” wrote one.