Armed Mommy, an anonymous, gun-toting, Denver conservative, has almost 47,000 fans on Facebook. She's been posting her own memes for just a year, developing #tcot clout in the process. Her schtick? She's a hot mom who's ready to shoot and kill anyone who tries to enter her home uninvited. In her cover photo, she's looking out towards the sunset with a toddler on her hip and what looks like an AR-15 slung over her shoulder.
Armed Mommy describes herself this way: "I am a wife and mother who believes in God and my 2nd amendment right. If you have always wondered if there was an afterlife, break into my house and find out!" The anatomy of the meme: hot mom, scary rifle, and a sassy quip about self defense. The Facebook page is brimming with paranoia — she is constantly concerned that bad people are trying to hurt her family. She's also worried that Facebook is censoring her posts.
It's not clear where the photos of the women are coming from, but Armed Mommy attributes the memes to herself. All of them are concerned with the threat of an intruder. She also shares photos of real moms with guns:
Armed Mommy is doing her part to push the idea that ladies love rifles. But a NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll released in April found that 65 percent of American women want stricter gun laws, compared to 44 percent of men. In September, a National Journal poll found that 71 percent of women think an assault weapons ban would help prevent mass shootings, compared to 44 percent of men. And according to Gallup polling from 2007 to 2012, only 15 percent of women own guns.
But as The Wire's Elspeth Reeve explained after Newtown last year, the NRA likes to trot out women when Congress pushes for increased gun control. Female gun advocates testified before Congress that guns are the "great equalizer in a violent confrontation," allowing women to take down male attackers. Breitbart's Awr Hawkins posits that gun control is the real "war on women." In August, he told the story of a mom who shot and wounded an intruder in her home, as proof that women need guns:
"In January 2013, Melinda Herman grabbed her kids and hid in the attic of her home as an intruder pushed through the front door of the house and eventually began trying to come through the door to the attic. Huddled behind that door with her children, Mrs. Herman unloaded a .38 Special revolver on the intruder, ending the attack. The ability to exercise her 2nd Amendment rights saved Mrs. Herman and her children. Why should women be denied the ability to protect themselves in this fashion?"
Of course, Armed Mommy agrees with Hawkins. But who does she think is trying to attack her family? Puzzlingly enough, she worries that "liberals" are out to kill her. She shared this meme on Saturday:
And she warns anyone who wants to play the made-up "knockout game":
Armed Mommy won't be stopped by a street assault or cumbersome fake nails.
And while she might not be afraid of them, Armed Mommy doesn't approve of gay men.
Her preferred expression of masculinity is a dad who teaches his daughters how to shoot guns, which can be found on her husband's "Armed Daddy" page. (Armed Mommy is more than three times more popular on Facebook than Armed Daddy, for the record.)
Despite her offensive jokes, to Armed Mommy, the shadowy threat of violence is real. Here's one of the more extreme memes she's shared:
But unfortunately, Armed Mommy hasn't realized the danger she's brought into her home. As a mother to a toddler girl, she's not sure what to do with the AR-15 that's supposed to be protecting her family:
Who here carries and has a toddler? How do you keep your curious little one away from your gun?— Armed Mommy (@ArmedMommy) December 19, 2013
A question for the ages. You can purchase your own "soft, stretchy, and slinky" Armed Mommy t-shirt here.