TRAVERSE CITY, Mich. — At first, Stacey Feeley thought that her daughter was just being funny when she was standing on the toilet.
“I thought she was doing something cute,” she said.
But her mischievous 3-year-old was practicing a lockdown drill — hiding from a potential attacker, hoping to avoid the type of tragedy that she likely isn’t able to fully comprehend at such a young age.
And when Feeley realized what she was doing, she broke down.
Many of those commenting on her Facebook post with the image — especially those outside the United States — expressed surprise at the fact that such a young child has to practice this sort of drill.
Her post came three days after a gunman in Orlando, Fla., carried out the most deadly mass shooting in U.S. history.
“Politicians – take a look. This is your child, your children, your grandchildren, your great grand children and future generations to come,” Feeley wrote. “They will live their lives and grow up in this world based on your decision.”
Thousands of Facebook users reacted to the post.
“This hurts so badly,” Madalyn Hooper Squires wrote.
“I’m sorry your little girl is living in a world where shes being taught to hide for her safety,” wrote Cat Price. “This truly breaks my heart.”
Others wrote from afar, describing how they could not comprehend the relationship Americans have with firearms and the Second Amendment.
And some said they had done lockdown drills in their youths years earlier.
Feeley’s post came days before the U.S. Senate voted down four measures that would have enacted tighter restrictions on firearms in the United States.
The votes were spurred in large part due to a filibuster from Connecticut Sen. Chris Murphy, who, along with a handful of his Senate colleagues, held the floor for nearly 15 hours last week to call for gun control reforms.