MATTHEWS: Media, Democrats portray transgender community as ‘other’ victim of Nashville mass shooting 

FILE - A balloon with names of the victims is seen at a memorial at the entrance to The Covenant School on Wednesday, March 29, 2023, in Nashville, Tenn. Bipartisan gun legislation signed by President Biden in 2022 has already prevented some potentially dangerous people from owning guns. But Democrats are calling for more action after mass shootings in Nashville and elsewhere, and Congress is at a familiar impasse. (AP Photo/Wade Payne, File)

Last Monday at a privately owned Christian elementary school in Nashville, 28-year-old Audrey Hale shot her way in and killed six, including three 9-year-old children. 

Hale, a former student who identified as “he/him,” was confronted a short time later by Metro Nashville police officers, two of whom fatally shot her. 

In the immediate aftermath of mass shootings, there is generally minimal focus on the victims by the press, who are usually busy trying to do two things: figure out what the shooter’s motivations were (in case there was a political or social angle) and weave blaming pro-Second Amendment Republicans into their stories. 

As per the norm, that’s exactly what happened after this one as well. 

Within a few hours, The Washington Post ran a story with the headline “GOP congressman from Nashville district ‘heartbroken’ by shooting. A 2021 photo shows his family with firearms.” The congressman they were referring to was Rep. Andy Ogles, who represents the district where the school is located. 

Other stories that came not long after reported on how Hale allegedly felt resentment toward her Christian parents who allegedly did not approve of her identifying as another gender. 

There was also a mad rush by the media to make sure Hale “wasn’t misgendered.” It seemed surreal to see how many media outlets were eager to show respect for the pronoun preferences of someone who had just taken six lives. 

In fact, CBS News is said to have issued a directive to its media staff to not use the word “transgender” in reference to Hale at all in their reporting. 

“We should avoid any mention of it as it has no known relevance to the crime,” the memo read. “Should that change, we can and will revisit.” 

More disturbingly, however, was how we weren’t even 24 hours into the story of what happened at the school before news outlets were filing pieces on how it was the transgender community who felt victimized by the shootings. 

“Fear pervades Tennessee’s trans community amid focus on Nashville shooter’s gender identity,” NBC News tweeted. 

“After school shooting, some trans-Tennesseans face backlash,” Reuters reported, with a focus on what they called the “anti-trans laws” in Tennessee which, among other things, outlaw gender-affirming care for minors. 

MSNBC’s Ali Velshi embodied the media’s response in a segment he did on the shootings. 

“Trans people are already more likely to experience violence simply because they’re trans, so the right focusing on that is uniquely dangerous and we have to respond to that,” he proclaimed. 

Democrats, too, did not cover themselves in glory, with some progressive activists urging fellow protesters to hold up seven fingers during a protest inside the Tennessee state capitol in a clear attempt at portraying Hale as the seventh victim of the mass shooting she orchestrated. 

“Every death is a tragedy, y’all. Seven lives,” the person stated as numerous people in the crowd held up seven fingers. 

Regardless of the mental health status of Hale and whether she could or could not get the help that she needed, she wasn’t the victim here. 

That this even needs to be said shows how deeply we’ve fallen as a country on many fronts, especially moral and spiritual. Good is bad and bad is good these days, and the ugliness of moral relativism is raising its head again. All of this is happening in large part because we have “leaders” in this country who refuse to actually lead and take a stand against the nonsense. 

This is just crazy. Even though I believe in American exceptionalism and believe that anything is possible in the greatest country on Earth, I’m struggling to make sense as to how this ship gets righted — or if it even can be at this point. 

North Carolina native Stacey Matthews has also written under the pseudonym Sister Toldjah and is a media analyst and regular contributor to RedState and Legal Insurrection