OPINION: Kaitlin Bennett: Not a journalist
Kaitlin Bennett from Liberty Hangout interviews students at Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ about Thanksgiving. She originally came to fame for posing with a gun on the Kent State campus. Wikimedia commons.
Kaitlin Bennett started off being known as the girl who took her graduation photos at Kent State University carrying an AR-10 rifle on campus in 2018.
Now she conducts interviews for Liberty Hangout.
What is Liberty Hangout? A "libertarian media outlet" and "alternative news source" focused on boiler-plate conservative issues.
After her graduation photo went viral, she was able to build her career off of her conservative beliefs.
She has been featured on Fox and Friends, CBS, the Washington Post and other outlets talking about her activism to legalize campus carry in the United States. According to Liberty Hangout, she has been contacted by state representatives and members of the U.S. Congress to work on campus carry legislation. She has also been asked to speak at multiple gun rallies across the country.
Bennett, also known as the Kent State Gun Girl, is now mostly famous for visiting college campuses and interviewing young adults on controversial topics, such as abortions and transgender people using certain bathrooms, showcasing her outspoken, conservative beliefs.
However, it is as if she approaches these young people with the intent to get a reaction out of them. She seems to thrive off of the reactions she receives from the people she interviews and the negative feedback on social media she gets from posting the videos.
Most of the people interviewed disagree with Bennett’s stances, and it is as if the videos themselves are uploaded for the sole purpose of shaming people.
Most of the backlash that Bennett receives is because of how she comes off with such a lack of self awareness.
Her own beliefs and stances on these controversial topics are pretty clear, but Bennett refuses to hear out the people she interviews. She comes off very close-minded.
Bennett advocates for her right to freedom of speech, yet she talks over the people she interviews when they do not share the same stances as herself. She almost belittles them for having a different opinion than her own.
Bennett is the one asking the questions but really does not care for the answers if they are not what she believes. She simply repeats her own questions, not listening to the interviewees.
The way that she poses her questions, especially in Liberty Hangout’s video “College Students Have No Morals”, Bennett almost baits the students into answering in the way she wants.
The video opens with her saying, “We’re here today at the University of Kentucky to see if college kids think about we should put tampons and pads in the men’s restrooms for men who have periods and urinals in the women’s restrooms for the women who have ding-dongs.”
Throughout this video she seems to try baiting the students into saying that only women have periods and only men have penises. But for the most part, it really just seems that she does all of this for attention. She wants reactions out of these people. She wants people to disagree with her.
Liberty Hangout claims to bring its readers insights on current events, but these videos that Bennett creates seem to only be for entertainment.
Bennett brings no real insight to her videos. She seems more like an instigator, with her real intent on getting good content for Liberty Hangout.
Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, yes, but the fact that Bennett is unable to see the other side or even hear out the other side of the opinion is why Bennett receives the backlash she does.
Especially as someone so prominent in the media, you would think Bennett would try to understand the other side of the controversial topics. However, she simply does not because she thrives off the attention.
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