Kaitlin Bennett

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Kaitlin Bennett (c. 1996–)[1] also known as Kent State Gun Girl, is a libertarian gun rights activist, who rose to prominence in May-June 2018 with several pro-gun tweets, and constant belittling of Parkland school shooting survivor David Hogg, mainly on her Twitter account.

Bennett was born and raised in Zanesville, Ohio, in a Republican household.[2] She majored in biology at Kent State, graduating in 2018. Besides her studies, she was also a conservative/libertarian activist on the campus.

In 2017, she was the president of the Kent State's chapter of Turning Point USA,[3] when the chapter protested against safe spaces by wearing diapers. This event later became mocked on social media, such as Twitter and Reddit, as "wearing diapers to own the libs". The ensuing fallout resulted in the Kent State chapter of TPUSA disbanding, and Bennett resigning from the organization, posting a goodbye letter online, branding the organization a "shithole."[4] Since then, she has been affiliated with Liberty Hangout, a "libertarian media outlet and alternative news source" that seeks to promote "Austrian economics and property rights" and (as of at least Jan 2019) Infowars.

However, her real claim to prominence came in May, 2018, when she posed at the graduation ceremony with an AR-10 rifle on the campus of Kent State University, where 48 years earlier, 4 students were killed by the Ohio National Guard.

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. #CampusCarryNow[5]

Her own statement on the Kent State shootings:

I believe not only that those four students would still be alive today had they had the right to carry on campus, but that students today would be much safer.[6]

Her statement later earned her an appearance on Fox & Friends.[7]

Following her segment on Fox, journalist Caleb Ecarma noted that Bennett liked a Facebook post by a white supremacist that advocated the genocide of minority groups.[8]

She has a very libertarian view on gun rights:

I believe that if the government has it, we should have it. Machine guns — any weaponry. To make sure the government can't go against the citizens. We should be able to protect ourselves against a tyrannical government.

However, between defending gun rights, she has also attacked David Hogg, a survivor of the Parkland shooting:

.@davidhogg111 I don't know if your tiny arms with Hitler-esque bands around them can't reach your @ button, but maybe instead of retweeting racist posts about me, you can have a real conversation about guns with me like the adult you want to be. #CampusCarryNow[9]

Later, she challenged David Hogg to an arm-wrestling match:

I have a challenge for you @davidhogg111. Let's arm wrestle. If I win, we get to keep the 2nd amendment. If you win, we turn in our guns. Deal?[10]

When Hogg didn't respond, she referred to him as "twig arms".[11]

When Hogg was awarded the Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights Award, she disapproved of it on Twitter:

Why is @davidhogg111 receiving a human rights award in Washington DC when he's actively trying to strip us of our human rights? When will we stop rewarding people for supporting violent government policies? #GunControlKills

In July 2018, she also visited New York City, but didn't seem to like it, not just for its gun control laws:

The only reason I'm smiling in this photo is because it was the only spot in NYC I couldn't smell piss or see trash on the ground.[12]

In January 2019, she voiced no sympathy for unpaid non-essential government workers during the government shutdown. She can apparently rail against taxation and also talk about "real" jobs in the same breath, as working and being taxed for work is usually a very obvious indicator it's a real job.

I really don't care that government employees aren't getting their paychecks, and neither should you. Taxation is theft. Get a real job! #GovernmentShutdown [13]

References[edit]

  1. Kent State graduate celebrates by strolling campus with her AR-10 by William Cummings (May 17, 2018) USA Today.
  2. The story behind the viral photo of a Kent State graduate posing with her cap — and a rifle by Marwa Eltagouri (May 17, 2018) Washington Post.
  3. Kent State students dress up as babies, claiming that 'safe spaces are for children' by Alex Kuang (October 25, 2017) The Daily Pennsylvanian.
  4. I'm Turning Point USA's Top Activist in the Country, & I Quit this Shitty Organization by Kaitlin Bennett (February 12, 2018) Liberty Hangout.
  5. Twitter
  6. 'Come and take it,' Kent State grad says while posing with AR-10 rifle by Lisa Gutierrez (May 16, 2018) Kansas City Star.
  7. Kent State graduate poses with rifle on campus May 17, 2018 Fox & Friends
  8. Twitter
  9. Twitter
  10. Twitter
  11. The Kent State Girl without her guns - Impaulsive ep. 41 at 35:36: "...he called me a racist... I would never just go after him for no reason and I don't think just because he was in a school shooting puts up a special shield to where we aren't allowed to criticize his ideas..."
  12. Twitter
  13. Twitter