The boyfriend of a graduate who posed with an semi-automatic rifle is reportedly now also receiving death threats after throwing his support behind his girlfriend’s controversial stance on gun control.
Kaitlin Bennett, 22, this month shared pictures of herself on the Kent State University campus in Ohio with an AR-10 slung over her shoulder while holding a graduation cap bearing the words “come and take it”.
She captioned one of the photos: “Now that I graduated from @KentState, I can finally arm myself on campus. I should have been able to do so as a student — especially since 4 unarmed students were shot and killed by the government on this campus.”
Ms Bennett, who responded to criticism of her photo by posting a second snap of her graduation ensemble, sparked outrage around the world – led by comedian Jim Carrey who shared a graphic cartoon depicting her as Goldilocks standing in front of the devil.
Thanks to all who have sent me death threats for taking a picture. You're the biggest advocates for gun rights. You proved exactly why people carry.
— Kaitlin Bennett (@KaitMarieox) May 16, 2018
“I decided to come back to campus and take graduation photos with an AR-10 because I wanted to start a conversation about gun rights on college campuses. It’s insulting that at Kent State University, guests may protect themselves with firearms on campus, but students and staff may not,” Ms Bennett told Yahoo Lifestyle.
“Why does the school value the lives of guests more than those paying thousands of dollars to attend the university?”
The online fury only intensified when Ms Bennett wrote the rifle was “super cute with my dress and heels”.
“When you beg for attention, you can’t be shocked that some of it’s negative,” one social media user responded to Ms Bennett’s Twitter post.
But even when the outrage evolved to death threats, the zoology graduate refused to back away from her stance, telling those who made the threats “you proved exactly why people carry”.
I have no apologies for my graduation photos. As a woman, I refuse to be a victim & the second amendment ensures that I don't have to be. pic.twitter.com/5CKmQobrMb
— Kaitlin Bennett (@KaitMarieox) May 15, 2018
She now claims her boyfriend, Justin, has also been subjected to death threats after he backed in her controversial views.
“The tolerant left is now sending death threats to my boyfriend. Congrats on continuing to prove to everyone why it’s important to carry a firearm for protection,” Ms Bennett tweeted.
She shared a Facebook message sent to him that read “hopefully you and your truckjaw girl will get gunned down before you have kids”.
Imagine defending the rights of an entire nation and in return half of them want you dead. Very tolerant, leftists.
— Kaitlin Bennett (@KaitMarieox) May 22, 2018
Not only have I received a job offer tonight, but several young men have offered their hands in marriage to me. I'm sorry I have to decline. I have a boyfriend. pic.twitter.com/q7YX4oi2Pi
— Kaitlin Bennett (@KaitMarieox) May 17, 2018
According to the school’s policy on deadly weapons, “students, staff, faculty, and third parties doing business with the university are further prohibited from possessing, storing, or using a deadly weapon while outside on university grounds, that is owned, operated or leased by the university”.
In April, a University of Tennessee at Chattanooga student named Brenna Spencer shocked many by posing for a graduation photo wearing a “Women for Trump” T-shirt and a handgun sticking out of the waistband of her white jeans.