YouTube star PewDiePie, whose real name is Felix Arvid Ulf Kjellberg, reacted to the horrific New Zealand mosque attack that left at least 49 dead late Thursday night, offering support for the victims’ families and saying he felt "absolutely sickened" to have his name uttered by the shooter.
The terrorist reportedly said on a livestream of the massacre to "subscribe to PewDiePie."
"Just heard news of the devastating reports from New Zealand Christchurch. I feel absolutely sickened having my name uttered by this person," said the YouTuber.
"My heart and thoughts go out to the victims, families and everyone affected by this tragedy," he added.
Others in the YouTube community responded to PewDiePie’s reaction to the news by offering support and condemning the senseless violence.
Popular gay YouTuber Sky Williams offered support to PewDiePie and the victims of the attack, writing:
"This is a completely f***ed situation. take as much time as you need to process this. this is not your fault. the shooter was clearly deeply disturbed. he could have used any meme in that moment. it wasn’t anything inspired by you at all. he was a disgusting monster, Felix.
It goes without saying that this issue and the grief that follows align with the victims and their loved ones. This tweet is of course not meant to detract from the abhorrent tragedy but rather to say: just as my heart is with them, it is with you in kind."
Gaming YouTuber Markiplier (real name Mark Fischbach) posted: "You had nothing to do with this. Full stop. The shooter, who should be forgotten to the ass-end of history, is only trying to create division. Anyone that believes or spreads the message that you were associated with this in any way is doing exactly what the shooter wants."
Roomie, a popular YouTuber whose real name is Joel Berghult, condemned outlets for blaming PewDiePie instead of the shooter for their actions. "I saw some news outlets trying to pin part of the blame on you - the whole situation is absolutely horrific, and trying to simplify deeper societal problems and use you as a scapegoat will only lead us further from addressing the real problems," he wrote.
"It is not deplorable to defend PewDiePie or anyone else mentioned by the Christchurch shooter," offered journalist Ian Miles Cheong. "You aren't taking away from the suffering of the victims, whose concern remains the utmost priority--but you are limiting the fallout intended by the shooter. That's not a bad thing."
"What matters now is preventing a repeat of the tragedy by acting to inhibit the growth of social and political divisions, seeds of which were sowed by the shooter and nurtured by parasites with radical political agendas. It's like a f***ing bonzai plant made of hate," he added.
As reported by The Daily Wire on Friday, there was reportedly a second attack on a mosque that was stopped by an armed worshiper. "The terrorist attack left 49 dead and dozens injured with at least 30 of the deaths coming from the Masjid Al Noor mosque and at least 10 more deaths coming from the Linwood Masjid Mosque," reported Ryan Saavedra. "The lower number of deaths at the Linwood Masjid Mosque may in part be attributable to a good guy with a gun stopping the shooting."
"A second shooting happened at a mosque in the Linwood area of the city," the New Zealand Herald reported. "One Friday prayer goer returned fire with a rifle or shotgun. … A well known Muslim local chased the shooters and fired two shots at them as they sped off."