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Mainstream Media Struggles With Nashville Shooter’s Gender

Graham Perdue
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CNN and other corporate news outlets ran into issues with identifying the gender of the suspected Nashville shooter when police confirmed she was transgender.

The cable news outlet originally headlined their online article with “28-year-old woman kills 3 students and 3 adults at private Christian school in Nashville, police say.”

That narrative stumbled, however, when the alleged shooter was identified as Audrey Hale, a biological woman who was transgender. The suspect went by “he/him” pronouns and was killed after allegedly murdering three nine-year-old children and three adults at Covenant School. 


The official identification by law enforcement led to a rapid scrub of mentions of gender from the CNN article. A screenshot of the updated piece revealed the changes. 

The new headline read, “Nashville private school shooting suspect had manifesto, maps of building and scouted possible second attack location, police say.” Interestingly, the network completely dropped pronouns in its coverage of the incident.

Instead, it either referred to the suspect by name or as the “shooter.”

CNN was hardly the only outlet that raced to correct themselves when the alleged shooter, first described as female, was then announced as identifying as a man.


The New York Times tweeted out an article stating that female mass shooters in the U.S., “like the one that occurred on Monday in Nashville — are extremely rare.” The newspaper of record later corrected itself and said it had misidentified the shooter.

The correction stated that “officials had used ‘she’ and ‘her’ to refer to the suspect.”

USA Today encountered the same predicament. After originally identifying the shooter as a woman, the outlet blamed Nashville law enforcement who “misidentified the gender of the shooter.”

Leftist outlets were not only tripped up by gender confusion. ABC News anchor Terry Moran tried to link the shooting to recently enacted Tennessee laws prohibiting public drag shows and use of puberty-blocking hormones on minors.

Moran noted the shooter identified as transgender and tried to link her horrific actions to the recent state legislation.

And a freelance NBC reporter, Benjamin Ryan, tried to connect the presence of conservative news brand The Daily Wire, which is based in Nashville, to the school shooting. This despite a manifesto being left behind by the suspect to point towards the true motive.