Zach Rosenberg can’t tell if he’s supposed to laugh or cringe at a series of online photos showing fathers aiming guns at their daughter’s prom dates.
Okay, I get it. Fathers are the protectors of their daughters, and so when a boy comes to pick them up for prom, the totally rational, logical, and hilarious thing to do is to get out your gun and take a photo that says—in its worth of 1,000 words—“If this boy touches my daughter, I’m going to shoot him.”
So, Bossip, “the premier destination for African-American and Black celebrity gossip, Black reality shows, pop culture and entertainment news” (their words, not mine), ran a gallery of armed dads posing with their daughters and the daughters’ prom dates. And what you see next, as Upworthy would say, will change your life. Or not.
But here’s my real question: Is this funny? Or are we too judgy?
Everything about these photos screams “Huntin’ Country, USA.” I’d be surprised if any of these photos came from anywhere north of the Mason-Dixon and west of the Mississippi, except for the one photo we know was taken as far west as Arizona and as far east as Texas because of the rock-lawn. So, is this a Southern dad thing? Is this like the purity ball‘s funny cousin?
And yeah, I’m going to go here: by the time you make it to the photo of the white dad pointing the gun at the Black prom date (with his finger actually ON the trigger), this whole gallery feels even more uncomfortable.
So, that happened. Cough.
But on the other hand of all of this—I’m not the daughter, not the dad, and not the prom date. I’m not even the prom date’s family. I mean, I’ve got a son, so someday, maybe I will be. But right now, I’m just a guy on the internet, looking at a collection of photos. I don’t know how well these dads parent. I know that they’re there, which is a good first step. I know that they obviously care about their daughters—who they’re with and where they go, so that’s good too. Do I necessarily agree with pointing a gun at someone (or near someone?) without the intention of killing them? Absolutely not. But I’m also not from Huntin’ Country, USA. This might just be their version of us Californians posing with our quinoa salads and juice cleanse kits.
So like I said in the opening line (which seemed like forever ago, amirite?)—I get it. I think the image of the shotgun-toting dad thing has got to change… but in a weird way, I get it.
Do you get it? Is this funny? Is this a non-issue? Have you been in a photo like this (and if so, where are you from)? Let me know in the comments.
Originally appeared on 8BitDad.com; Images courtesy of 8BitDad