Students Are Protesting The Arrival Of The Kent State “Gun Girl” On Their Campus

Photo: Shay Horse/NurPhoto/Getty Images.
Kaitlin Bennett, infamously known online as the “Kent State Gun Girl,” paid a visit to a college campus on Monday and was greeted by an unexpected crowd: disapproving students rioting her presence at their school. The former Kent State student who was once praised by gun activists for carrying a firearm on campus was very unwelcome by Ohio University students, who actively urged Bennett to leave.
Bennett, along with a bodyguard and members of her conservative activist website, Liberty Hangout, reportedly arrived on campus to film a video asking students trivia questions about President's Day, but left less than two hours later. According to her, she was greeted by a “riot” of protestors calling for her to leave the campus. In a tweet just after she left, Bennett posted a video from inside a car where students repeatedly flipped off her and her team. “This is what happens when a Trump supporter goes to a college campus,” Bennett tweeted claiming that the students rioted because of her support for Trump. “I think @realDonaldTrump should strip funding from universities like this that harbor terrorists.”
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ICYMI, Kaitlin Bennett first went viral online in 2018 for posting a celebratory graduation photo of herself carrying a semi-automatic rifle on Kent State University’s campus. As a student, she was not allowed to carry a firearm on university grounds; however, upon graduating, she was considered a visitor and Ohio state laws that allow civilians to carry a gun openly take precedence. A vocal advocate for open carry laws and the Second Amendment, she now films videos for Liberty Hangout’s YouTube channel with titles like, “College Students Learn Kaitlin Bennett Isn’t That Bad,” “Kaitlin Bennett Owns College Dem,” and “Liberals Are Hypocrites.”
Since then, Bennett has become something of an emblem for young gun rights activists in the U.S., and equally a symbol of danger for movements that seek to end gun violence. Although her tweet ignited some tensions about whether or not anti-gun protestors were actually showing aggression to her, Ohio University Police were quick to clarify that the group of students protesting Bennett’s visit had not risen to the level of a riot and made it clear that officers were present throughout the entire incident.
In a statement shared on Twitter, Ohio University Police mention that Bennett and her team never informed the university that she and her team were coming. “Although such notice is not required, the lack of it deprived the department of the ability to plan staffing levels,” the statement reads. “As a result, the officers on duty had to prioritize their response to the events as they unfolded, rightly putting everyone’s personal safety ahead of all other concerns.”
This isn’t the first time she received an unwelcome reception on a college campus. In April 2019, she visited Rutgers University in New Jersey to film a video interviewing students about student debt. Bennett claimed she was asked to leave campus, but a statement released by the university denies that she was ever asked to leave the property.
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