A picture of a Kent State University graduate carrying a rifle and graduation cap with the words “Come and take it” has taken the internet by a storm.
Kaitlin Bennett wrote in her tweet, “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”
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 pic.twitter.com/a91fQH44cq— Kaitlin Marie (@KaitMarieox) May 13, 2018
As of Wednesday evening, the tweet has been retweeted over 3,300 times, and responded to just under 2,000 times. There was a mix of support and opposition to Bennett’s post.
According to the university's website, it has rules against students, faculty, and staff carrying any “deadly weapons.”
Eric Mansfield, university spokesperson, told Fox 8 News that once Bennett graduated she was “no longer restricted under the policy as a student.”
He also said that all guns are banned at Dix Stadium and that Bennett notified the university of her intent to have the photos taken. Mansfield said they were taken the day after graduation.
In a statement to Fox 8 News, Mansfield said:
“Kent State University was recently ranked the safest big college campus in Ohio and 25th safest in the country, according to the National Council for Home Safety and Security. The university has a full-time, certified police force of more than 30 sworn officers who protect the campus. These officers are visible, well-trained and on duty 24/7 in support of students, staff and faculty.”
On Tuesday, Bennett posted another picture and wrote, “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.”