One of Disney’s most popular actors is using his celebrity status to angrily call out those he holds responsible for a school shooting that took place in Nashville, Tennessee, earlier this week.
On Monday morning, according to surveillance video, an individual, identified as 28-year-old Audrey Hale, arrived at the parking lot of The Covenant School located on Burton Hills Boulevard in Nashville, Tennessee, at 9:53 a.m. Only 18 minutes later, Hale–carrying two “assault-style” weapons and a handgun–shot out the glass doors located at a side entrance to the private Christian school. Surveillance video shows Hale kicking away glass shards that remained where the doors were, and then ducking under the doors’ bars to enter the school.
Almost immediately, local police received the first of many calls about an active shooter at the school where enrollment is open to students in grades Kindergarten through sixth. Officers responded instantly but were faced with two huge obstacles from the outset–first, heavy traffic, and second, the fact that police cars in the school parking lot had already been hit by gunfire, according to Metropolitan Nashville Police Chief John Drake.
Nashville Police say that within just four minutes of their arrival on the scene of the attacks at the school, Hale, the perpetrator, had been taken down. As of the time of this publication, authorities have said that Hale was a former student at The Covenant School and that the victims–six total: three children and three adults–were attacked at random, but Hale’s motive in carrying out such an unspeakable act has not been determined.
But one Disney actor has taken to social media to publicly lay blame for Monday’s attack at the feet of the Republican Party. In a tweet on Monday evening, actor Josh Gad, named a Disney Legend during the 2022 D23 Expo and known best for lending his voice to Olaf the Snowman in Disney’s Frozen franchise, expressed his anger and frustration over the shooting in Nashville and says the GOP is responsible.
“The GOP have decided that guns are more important than kids. There are no two ways to look at this situation. It doesn’t matter how many children are massacred. They have decided it is okay to let kids die. Not mind you read certain books. That’s unacceptable. But dying is fine.”
The GOP have decided that guns are more important than kids. There are no two ways to look at this situation. It doesn’t matter how many children are massacred. They have decided it is okay to let kids die. Not mind you read certain books. That’s unacceptable. But dying is fine.
— Josh Gad (@joshgad) March 28, 2023
In a post on his official Instagram account, Gad penned a lengthy post, calling out politicians and citing recent legislation about drag shows, gun laws, and book bans, and asking why drag shows and certain books have been banned, but not “assault weapons.”
“When does this madness end?” Gad wrote, in part, in an Instagram post on Wednesday. “How are books being banned but not assault weapons? Drag hasn’t killed a single child, but politicians are spending all of their time and energy making sure it’s banned. When do we say enough? When are we going to be angry enough to say our children shouldn’t have to fear every day at school being their last? Enough. Speak up and speak out. Use your platform and demand action immediately.”
Gad was verbose in his posts about the horrific school shooting, using expletives multiple times as he laid blame for the attacks at the feet of a political party. He also said in his Instagram post that “every single politician that takes a stand . . . but silently continues to accept money from the NRA” is “complicit in the ongoing murder of our children.” But the 42-year-old actor failed to mention that the shooter, Audrey Elizabeth Hale, who identified as transgender and who senselessly took the lives of six innocent people, did, in fact, leave behind a manifesto, stating Hale’s intentions and motives for the horrific actions taken on Monday.
During a press conference held just hours following the attacks, Police Chief Drake addressed the media during a press conference, saying that the department had in its possession a manifesto written by Hale, as well as a map with details about how the incident would take place, and writings “that pertain to this date, the actual incident,” referring to the shootings at The Covenant School on Monday. Police also confirmed that Hale intended to carry out additional murderous attacks against her family members and against innocent people in a local shopping mall.
Gad encouraged other celebrities to use their platforms to take a similar stand against what he considers the GOP’s ill-placed priorities when it comes to legislation, but some of those opposed to Gad’s views on the matter want to know what role a United States political party played in Hale’s self-admitted and willful decision to take innocent lives at The Covenant School–the lives of 9-year-old Evelyn Dieckhaus, 9-year-old William Kinney, and 9-year-old Hallie Scruggs, and Mike Hill, 61, Cynthia Peak, 61, and Katherine Koonce, 60.