Carson Wentz responds to critics of hunting photo on Twitter

Most Eagles fans wouldn’t associate Carson Wentz with the word controversial.

But on Twitter, where even the most innocuous message doesn’t go unpunished, Wentz managed to rile up a small number of his 670,000 followers after simply wishing his dog Mama Henley a happy birthday.

“Happy 5th Birthday to Mama Henley!” Wentz tweeted. “We’ve been through a lot in 5 years. Best dog and hunting buddy I could ask for!”

Along with the happy birthday message, Wentz shared two pictures of the golden retriever — one of the dog as a puppy, and another standing behind a row of dead geese following a hunting trip.

At first glance, the response to Wentz’s message doesn’t seem heated, with many fans replying with photos of their own dogs, usually sporting Eagles wear.

But a handful of followers were critical of the photo.

Later, Wentz responded to the critics.

“Two of the main things I tweet about are Jesus and hunting. That’s what I’m passionate about and that won’t ever change!” Wentz wrote. “When you love something, you talk about it! Stay convicted about it and don’t worry what others think!”

It wasn’t the first time Wentz has riled up his Twitter followers. Following the mass shooting in Las Vegas that claimed the lives of nearly five dozen concertgoers, Wentz drew ire from some followers by invoking his religion and offering his prayers following the tragedy.

In an interview with my colleague Jeff McLane, Wentz was candid about using his platform to spread God’s word, despite knowing that being vocal about his faith could be a divisive issue for some fans.

“You’re always walking that fine line, without a doubt,” Wentz said. “I always tell people, for example, ‘If you love your job, you love your wife, you love what you do, you’re going to talk about it. Well, I love Jesus.’ That’s what I love, so I’m going to talk about it. But I’m not going to force it down your throat either.”

Many celebrities, including actor Alec Baldwin and singer Kanye West, have quit Twitter over the past year, citing the toxic environment created by trolls, bots and racists. Even some journalists, like CNN’s Alisyn Camerota and ESPN’s Wright Thompson, have deleted their accounts and moved on from the popular social media network.

“Every single person, me and you included, are the distillation of our worst selves on Twitter,” Thompson said recently on the Sunday Long Read Podcast. “There is nothing I miss about it, and I will never ever get back on it.”

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