Kaitlin Bennett: Why she wore an assault-style rifle at graduation
May 17, 2018 4:10 pm
A woman who slung an assault-style rifle across her shoulder for her graduation photos in the US has sparked a fierce debate over personal freedom, student protests and white privilege.
Kaitlin Bennett graduated from Kent State University in Ohio with a degree in biology.
The following day, the 22-year-old returned to the campus with an AR-10 semi-automatic rifle strapped to her back and posed for photographs while holding a graduation cap emblazoned with the words “come and take it”.
Bennett, who later posted the photographs on Twitter, says she was protesting against a university policy that prohibited students, professors and employees from carrying “lethal weapons” on campus – but allows “guests” to possess them on school grounds (but not in buildings).
She noted that Kent State was the location where “four unarmed students were shot and killed by the government” – a reference to the 1970 incident where soldiers clashed with Vietnam War protesters, firing shots that hit 13 protesters and bystanders.