NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ - Kaitlin Bennett, the so-called Kent State Gun Girl, is back.
Bennett, the sometimes assault rifle-toting social media personality who stirred controversy on the Rutgers-New Brunswick campus last May when she was confronted by students as she tried to film a video, has returned to the Banks of the Old Raritan.
This time, she has made a video entitled "Thanksgiving is Canceled" in which she asked Rutgers students at various locations around College Avenue if Thanksgiving is an offensive holiday.
"Blue-check liberals on Twitter have been saying Thanksgiving is offensive, you shouldn't celebrate it," Bennett says in the introduction to the video. "Well, we're here at Rutgers University to see if the student body agrees with that. Let's see what they think."
Many of the Rutgers students that appear in the 15-minute long video say Thanksgiving is an offensive holiday. They link the holiday to historical global colonialism and white privilege.
At one point in the video, Bennett is interviewing James Boyle of the Central Jersey Climate Coalition. She instructs him to "educate" another student because "he's a white guy. He probably doesn't know much."
"America is based on genocide and the forceful movement of black and brown people to this country, enslavement, and that history isn't acknowledged in virtually any holidays," Boyle said in the video.
Bennett became a social media sensation in 2018 when her college graduation photo - replete with an AR-10 slung across her back - went viral. Her cap was inscribed with the words, "Come and take it" and included an image of the rifle.
She came to Rutgers in May to conduct interviews with students about student debt for a video to be published on the far-right media outlet InfoWars. As cameras rolled near the Paul Robeson Plaza on College Avenue, students began to interrupt her. Some asked her to move.
In her video, one woman repeatedly states, "This is the only space dedicated to the commemoration and celebration of Paul Robeson and you picked this spot?" She also called the location dedicated to the late actor, singer, political activist and Rutgers graduate "sacred ground."
Eventually, Bennett left the area and the campus after talking with campus police. Later, she tweeted that she was forced to leave after "a group of liberals" called the police.
Rutgers issued a statement saying that the school "is committed to free speech and encourages respectful and vigorous discourse." According to the statement, Rutgers Police did not order anyone gathered "to leave campus."
Bennett is no stranger to controversy. In April, she was escorted out of Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders' town hall meeting in Ohio. The following day, Sanders called her a white supremacist.