Gun club owner: ‘Holiday tradition’ for kids to hold machine guns in Santa photos

By David Edwards
Monday, November 26, 2012 11:54 EDT
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Santa Clause takes photos with children holding machine guns
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The general manager of the Scottsdale Gun Club in Arizona is defending his organization’s “Santa machine gun event” as a “holiday tradition.”

Ron Kennedy on Monday told Fox News that his gun club was simply trying to “add a little holiday spirit into people’s Second Amendment rights” when it began allowing members to bring their children to take photos with Santa Claus and firearms three years ago.

But Fox News host Gretchen Carlson noted that Democratic Arizona state Rep. Steve Farley criticized the holiday event last year as sending the wrong message after the shooting of U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D-AZ).

“We do go all through the safety precautions, remove the firing pins, no fingers on the triggers,” Kennedy insisted.

“Do you think there is a chance that this could spread to Easter and have the Easter Bunny and families with guns?” Fox News host Brian Kilmeade wondered.

Kennedy explained that there were no current plans to expand to other holidays, but “Santa’s been supportive… He likes seeing the families enjoy the shooting sports together.”

“Why not arm Santa?” Kilmeade pressed.

“Santa does not carry a firearm,” Kennedy replied.

“I think that’s a good idea, actually,” Carlson agreed.

Speaking to The Associated Press in 2011, Farley had lashed out at the gun club for not understanding the meaning of Christmas.

“To involve machine guns and Santa in a celebration in the birth of Jesus Christ is the worst kind of heresy I can imagine,” the Democratic lawmaker declared. “I would suggest that the people who created this read some of the New Testament.”

Watch this video from Fox News’ Fox & Friends, broadcast Nov. 26, 2012.

(h/t: Political Carnival)

David Edwards
David Edwards
David Edwards has served as an editor at Raw Story since 2006. His work can also be found at Crooks & Liars, and he's also been published at The BRAD BLOG. He came to Raw Story after working as a network manager for the state of North Carolina and as as engineer developing enterprise resource planning software. Follow him on Twitter at @DavidEdwards.
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