By: Sam Doak
March 31 2023
Macdonald did not tweet about this. The image purportedly showing this is an edited version of a post uploaded in 2016.
On March 27, 2023, a shooting occurred at a school in Nashville, Tennessee, killing six people, including three children. In the days since, the gender identity of the alleged perpetrator, who was killed when confronted by responding police, has been an area of focus in the media and online.
In this context, there has been a significant amount of false and misleading claims concerning transgender people. One narrative that has emerged concerns the deceased comedian Norm Macdonald. It has been spread primarily through an image of a tweet that some believe Macdonald posted during his lifetime. It reads, "What terrifies me is if a t****y were to shoot up a school full of children and kill a bunch of innocent kids. Imagine the pain when they're misgendered by the media?"
This image has been shared widely after being posted by Stew Peters. Peters, who hosts an online television program and frequently shares misinformation concerning COVID-19 and other topics, captioned the image, "Norm was ahead of his time."
Norm Macdonald did not tweet this statement. Logically searched Macdonald's Twitter profile for phrases included in this statement with no result, confirming that the late comedian did not write anything to this effect on the platform.
A review of Macdonald's Twitter account reveals that the late comedian posted a tweet with the exact same timestamp shown on the fake tweet shared by Stew Peters. It reads, "What terrifies me is if ISIS were to detonate a nuclear device and kill 50 million Americans. Imagine the backlash against peaceful Muslims?" This tweet was posted in December 2016.
Given that this tweet has the same timestamp and markedly similar content, it is highly likely that the screenshot shared by Stew Peters is an edited version. It should be noted that Peters has a long track record of sharing misinformation. In March 2023, The Canadian Broadcasting Corporation outlined Peters' career in the following terms: "Stew Peters is an online media personality who pushes COVID-19 misinformation. In November, he released a film called Died Suddenly, which presents the evidence-free claim that COVID vaccines are causing sudden deaths in people around the world."
Norm Macdonald did not tweet about the possibility of a transgender perpetrator of a mass shooting being misgendered. This is most likely an edited version of a similar tweet Macdonald posted in 2016 that did not mention transgender people. This claim has therefore been marked as false.