Networks Barely Mention Church Shooter Was Trans, Trumpet IL Mom Rushing to Scene

March 28th, 2023 2:25 PM

Between Monday night and Tuesday morning, the flagship broadcast network newscasts on ABC, CBS, and NBC have spent roughly 65 minutes (64:56) on the deadly shooting at Covenant School in Nashville, Tennessee, but only had 11 mentions over six newscasts mentioning that the shooter was transgender. Specifically, Tuesday’s CBS Mornings never mentioned that the woman was trans and identifying as a man.

The networks were also hellbent on activism, including CBS and NBC touting a woman claiming to have been on vacation in Nashville and, upon hearing of the shooting, rushed over to seize the spotlight as she allegedly survived the July 4, 2022, Highland Park, Illinois shooting.

On the shooter’s transgenderism, NBC had more than half the mentions during their 17 minutes and 17 seconds of coverage with seven split across NBC Nightly News (four) and Today (three).

ABC came next with three nods across 18 minutes and four seconds between World News Tonight (one) and Good Morning America (two). 

Despite having spent a gigantic 29 minutes and 35 seconds Monday night and Tuesday morning on Nashville, CBS made clear it wanted to protect the shooter and the implications of their gender identity with zero on the aforementioned AM show and just one on  CBS Evening News.

Speaking of them, CBS Mornings twice trumpeted the alleged Illinois resident as some sort of passionate sage, but ignored the fact that her presence included running up to the cameras and microphones as one of the initial press conferences from Nashville police concluded:

DAVID BEGNAUD: Ashby Beasley was in Nashville on vacation, but she came to the scene in solidarity. She and her sons survived a different shooting in Highland Park, Illinois, last July.

ASHBEY BEASLEY: How is this still happening? How are our children still dying? And why are we failing them?

Co-host and Democratic donor, Gayle King was enthralled with Beasley:

But the — you had a little sound bite with Ashley Beasley who was saying how much more. Earlier in that bite, she looked at reporters and said, aren't you guys sick of covering this story? And I want to say to her, Mrs. Beasley, we’re so sick of covering that story and I know you feel the same way. You’re there on the scene. It’s just one heartbreaking detail after the other. I know you feel this as well, David. [INAUDIBLE] I’m so angry and I'm so sick of it.

The “Eye Opener” at 8 also brought her up with King again touting her: “I agree with Mrs. Beasley who said earlier — we talked about this — are we sick of covering it? Are we sick of hearing about it? And the answer is yes, we are.”

NBC’s two shows had uncredited soundbites of Beasley, with both falsely citing her as someone part of this Nashville community (click “expand”):

KATHY PARK [on NBC Nightly News with Lester Holt, 03/27/23]: Tonight, grief gripping another community. This time, a deadly day inside an American school.

BEASLEY: How is this still happening? How are our children still dying? And why are we failing them? 


CATIE BECK [on NBC’s Today, 03/28/23]: President Biden ordering flags to fly at half-staff nationwide and urging congress to pass a new assault weapons ban.

PRESIDENT JOE BIDEN: We have to do more to stop gun violence. It is ripping our communities apart. 

BECK: — while a group of new parents are now echoing a similar heart-breaking question. 

BEASLEY: How are our children still dying? And why are we failing them?

As an aside, CNN also fawned over Beasley with at least four mentions in the last two days. In the first instance, correspondent and fill-in CNN Newsroom host Alex Marquardt falsely claimed she was now a two-time mass shooting survivor (click “expand”):

MARQUARDT: We want to play a little bit of sound from a woman who had a family member at the scene. Let’s take a listen.

BEASLEY: My name is Ashby Beasley from Highland Park, Illinois. I was actually in town just on vacation. But I’m a mass shooting survivor. My son and I survived a mass shooting in Highland Park where there was a shooting at a parade that we were at. We ran for our lives, and this is just unacceptable. It’s only in America can somebody survive a mass shooting and then go on vacation, um, to visit another person that they have met through, you know, fighting for gun safety. And find themselves at another — involved — like, near another mass shooting. Like, only — you know what I mean — like, only in America does this happen where we keep seeing this again and again and again? You know, only in America does her son survive a mass shooting and then you know, end up in a lockdown school because there is another mass shooting.


BEASLEY: This is an epidemic. Gun violence is an epidemic and it needs — it needs — it needs to be resolved.

UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: It needs to be addressed.

BEASLEY: It needs to be addressed.

FOX 17 WZTV NASHVILLE REPORTER: When you hear about it happening at his school again, what — what goes through your head?

BEASLEY: Um, I mean through me, the statistics start running — like, it’s likely this gun was purchased legally. It’s likely it was not stored properly and a child took — I heard that it might have been a child or sixth grader. And I mean just how preventable this is, how preventable these incidences are, how we should pass gun safety legislation and lock up weapons. And, you know, um, put background checks — require background checks on every single gun purchase, assault weapons. And until we do those things, this is going to continue.

MARQUARDT: And Andrew [McCabe], it’s not just horribly routine that the school shooting — these shootings are happening over and over again, that they’re happening over and over at schools. But as we heard there, we now have people in America and this is not the first time we’ve heard this who have experienced more than one mass shooting. That woman was at Highland Park. She’s now — she’s now a witness to the — the shooting in Nashville. I mean, we have a growing number of — of the population here in the United States that have witnessed more than one mass shooting and not a long period of time.