Kent State Gun Rights Activists Demand Campus Carry After Photo Goes Viral

Images: Liberty Hangout

On Sunday, May 20th Young Americans for Liberty at Kent State University, Kent State students, and alumni; inspired by the recent viral picture of “Kent State Gun Girl” Kaitlin Bennett; sent a letter to Kent State’s administration demanding concealed carry rights on campus.

The letter, addressed to Kent State University president Beverly Warren, invoked legal precedence in the State of Ohio that struck down restrictive firearms laws imposed by local municipalities. It also cited controversial 2016 concealed carry legislation Ohio Senate Bill 199, which allowed universities in the state to determine their own policies regarding concealed carry on campus.

The letter featured twenty co-signers, including many prominent student leaders, like Liberty Hangout at Kent State University founder Kaitlin Bennett, the President of Delta Chi fraternity, multiple undergraduate student government senators, the former President of Phi Kappa Psi fraternity, a Cuyahoga Falls City Councilman, and Ohio YAL State Chair and Kent State student Kevin Cline.

Young Americans for Liberty at Kent State’s Secretary and letter author Kevin Cline said this regarding the letter, “Once again, firearms are a controversial topic in this country. Gun rights advocates are on the defensive, trying to prevent our Constitutional rights from being infringed upon. Kaitlin’s viral picture changed the conversation, and the time to demand our right to self-defense on campus is now. Kaitlin’s ‘photo seen around the world’ demanded #CampusCarryNow, and we stand behind her 100%.”

Kaitlin Bennett’s graduation picture went viral and garnered instant national attention and backlash. She invoked the infamous May 4th, 1970 shooting of four Kent State students protesting the Vietnam War by Ohio National Guardsmen as reasoning for demanding firearms rights on campus. Previously, she had organized a firearm rights awareness demonstration on campus.

Kaitlin had this to say regarding the letter, “During my time as a student at Kent State, my cameraman was assaulted for supporting the 2nd amendment, and I received numerous threats as well. I would have felt a lot safer with a firearm on my hip, especially as a woman. It’s absolutely disgusting that guests can protect themselves with firearms on campus, but the students who spend thousands of dollars to attend the school can’t. I am hopeful that my photo and this letter will pressure the university to respect the 2nd amendment.”

Kent State University has yet to respond to the demand letter.

The letter is viewable here.

Support the Kent State gun rights activists and their #CampusCarryNow initiative by ordering a t-shirt here.