A US congressman has sparked outrage by posting a Christmas photo of him and his family holding guns, at a time when the country is still reeling from its latest school shooting.
“Merry Christmas! ps. Santa, please bring ammo,” Thomas Massie, a Republican lawmaker from Kentucky, tweeted with a photo of him and his family smiling and posing with machine guns in front of a Christmas tree.
The post came days after the Nov. 30 shooting at Oxford High School in Michigan that left four students dead and eight more injured.
Fred Guttenberg, father of one of the 17 victims of the 2018 Parkland high school shooting, responded to the congressman with a photo of his late daughter Jaime.
“@RepThomasMassie, since we are sharing family photos, here are mine. One is the last photo that I ever took of Jaime, the other is where she is buried because of the Parkland school shooting. The Michigan school shooter and his family used to take photos like yours as well,” Guttenberg said on Twitter.
A Democrat congressman also took aim at his Republican colleague.
“I’m old enough to remember Republicans screaming that it was insensitive to try to protect people from gun violence after a tragedy,” John Yarmuth commented.
“Now they openly rub the murder of children in our faces like they scored a touchdown. Disgraceful.”
Adil Ray, a British comedian and actor, blasted the photo as “disgusting.”
“Last year in the US over 5,000 children were shot. Over 1,300 died. Yet a Republican politician decided this is the festive photo. Now imagine, if this was a photo by a Black or Muslim family this Christmas. This is what a White Privileged Christmas looks like. Disgusting,” Ray said on Twitter.
Ken Olin, an American actor, wrote on Twitter: “In all seriousness … What kind of true Christian celebrates the birth of Christ this way, @RepThomasMassie?”