Marilyn Manson clearly hasn’t lost his edge. The heavy metal shocker returned for his first live performance since he had a stage accident and required surgery on his leg. The injury has kept Manson in a wheelchair, but that hasn’t slowed him down performance-wise.
Returning to Ozzfest Meets Knotfest, Manson pulled out a fake semi-automatic rifle and sprayed fake bullets onto the crowd. This was just hours after a mass shooting occurred in Texas, where a gunman opened fire inside a church and killed 26 people. San Bernadino, the host city of the festival, had its own mass shooting back in 2015.
This isn’t the first time Manson has made headlines the past few weeks. Aside from the injury, Manson recently fired his bassist, Twiggy Ramirez, after accusations of rape. Founding member of the band, Daisy Berkowitz, also recently lost his battle with colon cancer.
For those trying to figure out Manson’s reasoning, he released a statement to clarify. According to him, the fake shooting was “an act of theater in an attempt to make a statement about how easily accessible semi-automatic weapons are and how seeing them has become normalized.”
According to Manson, this is in-line with what his music has always been about. “My art has always been a reaction to popular culture and my way to make people think about the horrible things that happen in this world.”
He also dodged any potential criticism saying: “My performance was not meant to be disrespectful or show any insensitivity. The prop microphone I used on stage was handed to me with the approval of a police officer. My empathy goes out to anyone who has been affected by the irresponsible and reprehensible misuse of REAL guns.”