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“Love it or hate it, little kids go on hunting trips, and the thing about hunting trips is that there’s usually a gun or two involved in the process. There’s a world of difference between snapping a photo of your 4-year-old with a loaded handgun they’ve never handled before and taking a few pictures on a family trip (with responsible adults standing right there) for posterity.” That’s a more even-handed treatment of the kerfuffle over a pseudo-celebrity posting a pic of her child holding a gun than you’d expect from, no? Not that plenty of Mackenzie Douthit McKee’s fans and followers didn’t freak . . .

If you’re not familiar with her – and why would you be? – McKee rose because of her appearance on the MTV show and cultural barometer known as 16 and Pregnant. But when she posted this pic of her son in camo holding a BB gun, it stirred up “a hot parenting debate,” as MSN noted.

“A child this young has no reason to learn how to use a gun and cannot fully understand what it’s like to take a life,” one user commented. Another seemed to take issue with the whole “good ol’ boy” vibe in general, simply saying, “For his age this seems really of a redneck think [sic] to push.” Another was just shocked at Gannon’s age: “Can people stop giving there [sic] kids access to guns already!! Let the kid grow up first…”

If you scroll through the comments, she had plenty of supporters, too. There’s nothing here to indicate the tyke wasn’t being taught to have fun and to do it safely. But if, as a high-school cheerleader, you’d agreed to feature the birth of your child on MTV, a little anti-gun carping probably rolls right off your back.

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  1. Oh, for cryin’ out loud! Wait, come to think of it, that’s exactly what they are doing, isn’t it?

  2. I was 10 when I inherited a brass and wood Benjamin pellet rifle. I immediately went out back and shot a killed a bird – probably the first dead thing I can remember seeing other than a roach. I felt bad. I had killed something for the first time, I did it without thinking about it, and I had done it purely for entertainment and thrill. I learned instantly what death was and what it meant to take life. Since then I have never taken an animals life, nor would I take a human’s life, without well considered reason and purpose.

    One pull of a trigger taught me all that. I challenge any hoplophobe to impart the value of life to their children as quickly, efficiently and profoundly as that, without without a gun.

    • Surprisingly, this was my experience as well. I killed a bird with my first air rifle at around the same age. I immediately regretted it for much the same reasons you provide. That said, I started bow hunting at 14, and have kept it up through today at 40. I learned to respect life and death and respect firearms by being introduced to them at a young age.

      • I didn’t mean to imply that I haven’t killed any animals since. I have since been bird hunting and deer hunting many times. But, I never take a shot without an appreciation for what it means to do so – and never for just for a thrill or entertainment. I think I made that clear, but upon re-reading it, it seemed like I might be implying otherwise.

  3. Oh the outrage! Faked outrage to be sure. Dumb outrage definitely. In the twitterverse, everybody is offended by everything all the time. In RL, the same punks would sh!t their little pants at the very thought of saying something to the so-called “offender’s” face.

    Personally, I love to give offense to morons. The more they burn, the more it smells like victory.

  4. Oh fun! The story seems to have disappeared from MSN when I was about to comment. Actually most of the comments were supportive of the mom and kid, so it’s not a surprise to find the story pulled.

  5. “Can people stop teaching their kids to tie their shoes already!! Let the kid grow up first…”
    “Can people stop __________ already!! Let the kid grow up first…”

    Feel free to fill in the blank.

  6. It’s much more desirable for proggies to have youths swear and use obscene gestures at people they disagree with than it is to teach children safe and responsible handling of firearms.

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