CHICAGO, IL - FEBRUARY 05: Marilyn Manson performs at Riviera Theatre on February 5, 2015 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Daniel Boczarski/Getty Images)

Here’s a shocker; Marilyn Manson is in hot water again. 

The shock rocker — still in a wheelchair after breaking his leg and other injuries during a September 30 show in New York City — is taking heat for brandishing a fake assault rifle/microphone at the crowd in his return to the stage on Sunday (November 5) during the OZZFest Meets Knotfest festival in San Bernadino, Calif.

The move came just hours after the church shooting assault in Sutherland Springs, Texas, which killed 26 and wounded more than 20 others. San Bernadino, meanwhile, was the site of a terrorist attack itself in 2015 in which 14 were killed in an office building by a married couple.

Manson has issued a statement defending himself, explaining that, “In an era where mass shootings have become a nearly daily occurrence this was an act of theatre in an attempt to make a statement about how easily accessible semi-automatic weapons are and how seeing them has become normalized. My art has always been a reaction to popular culture and my way to make people think about the horrible things that happen in the world. 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.”

At the show Manson also introduced a new bassist, Juan Alderete from the Mars Volta, to replace Jeordie White (aka Twiggy Ramirez), who Manson fired last month after a former girlfriend accused White of abusing her during their relationship.

Manson begins a European tour on November 12 in Helskini and will make up the North American shows postponed by his injury starting January 10 in Phoenix.


Gary Graff is an award-winning music journalist who not only covers music but has written books on Bob Seger, Neil Young and Bruce Springsteen.

Erica Banas is a rock/classic rock news blogger who's well versed in etiquette and extraordinarily nice.