CBS News is reportedly ordering staff not to use the term “transgender” to describe the shooter responsible for Monday’s horrific shooting at a private Christian school in Nashville, Tennessee, that left six dead, including three 9-year-old children.
Police identified the shooter as a 28-year-old transgender and did not rule out that gender identity may have been a factor in a manifesto that was left behind, but network executives issued a memo to employees urging them to stay away from such coverage, according to The New York Post.
“The shooter’s gender identity has not been confirmed by CBS News. As such, we should avoid any mention of it as it has no known relevance to the crime. Should that change, we can and will revisit,” the memo read, per The New York Post.
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The memo continued, “Right now we advise saying: POLICE IDENTIFIED THE SUSPECT AS A 28-YEAR-OLD AUDREY HALE, WHO THEY SHOT AND KILLED AT THE SCENE. And move on to focus on other important points of the investigation, community and solutions.”
The directive was issued on a Tuesday morning editorial call by CBS News newsgathering vice president Ingrid Ciprian-Matthews and standards and practices senior vice president Claudia Milne.
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Grabien transcripts show that “CBS Evening News” did mention how authorities revealed that the shooter identified as transgender on Monday’s broadcast but made no mention of it on Tuesday and Wednesday. However, CBS News anchor Norah O’Donnell did use female pronouns for the shooter on Tuesday.
CBS News did not immediately respond to Fox News’ request for comment.
There’s been an effort by some media organizations to deflect the shooter being transgender as being a potential factor in Monday’s mass shooting.
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NBC News went even further with its coverage, suggesting trans people are the real victim of Nashville’s massacre instead of the students and staff of the private Christian school, running the headline, “Fear pervades Tennessee’s trans community amid focus on Nashville shooter’s gender identity.”
The report quoted members of the local LGBTQ community who fear the backlash following the shooting may put them in danger.
Meanwhile, there have been growing calls for law enforcement to release the shooter’s manifesto that may shed light on the motivation of the Nashville mass shooting. Others have urged that the murders should be investigated as a hate crime targeting Christians.
Source: Fox News