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Morgan Freeman's viral statement on Sandy Hook shooting is a hoax

Posted By KATE STANTON, UPI.com   |   Dec. 17, 2012 at 10:18 AM
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Plenty of celebrities voiced their opinions on Friday's tragic Sandy Hook school shooting in Newtown, Conn., but Morgan Freeman wasn't one of them. Though a thoughtful post showed up on the 75-year-old actor's Facebook page, Freeman's rep says his account was hacked.

"He did not write nor release this statement," Freeman's rep said. "To date he has not released any statement [about the shooting]."

Redditor Quintilian751 identified another Facebook user, "Mark" from Vancouver, as the statement's original writer, and said he had hacked the account:

Was actually written by a dude named Mark in Vancouver. Couple of us thought it'd be funny, since it was a well written article, to attribute it to Morgan Freeman. Day Later, Reddit Front Page. Bravo, Internet.

Mark had joked in his post's comments: "If I know the internet, someone will attribute the quote to Morgan Freeman or Betty White and it'll go viral."

Here's the original post in full:

You want to know why. This may sound cynical, but here's why.

It's because of the way the media reports it. Flip on the news and watch how we treat the Batman theater shooter and the Oregon mall shooter like celebrities. Dylan Klebold and Eric Harris are household names, but do you know the name of a single victim of Columbine? Disturbed people who would otherwise just off themselves in their basements see the news and want to top it by doing something worse, and going out in a memorable way. Why a grade school?

Why children? Because he'll be remembered as a horrible monster, instead of a sad nobody.

CNN's article says that if the body count "holds up", this will rank as the second deadliest shooting behind Virginia Tech, as if statistics somehow make one shooting worse than another. Then they post a video interview of third-graders for all the details of what they saw and heard while the shootings were happening. Fox News has plastered the killer's face on all their reports for hours. Any articles or news stories yet that focus on the victims and ignore the killer's identity? None that I've seen yet. Because they don't sell. So congratulations, sensationalist media, you've just lit the fire for someone to top this and knock off a day care center or a maternity ward next.

You can help by forgetting you ever read this man's name, and remembering the name of at least one victim. You can help by donating to mental health research instead of pointing to gun control as the problem. You can help by turning off the news.

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