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Furious Madonna rips criticism of teenage son holding gin bottle: 'Calm down!'

Madonna stirs controversy after posting a photo of son Rocco, 13, holding a liquor bottle.
Madonna Instagram

Madonna hit back at critics who slammed her after she posted a controversial Instagram photo of her 13-year-old son, Rocco, saying they need to calm down.

"No one was drinking, we were just having fun! Calm down and get a sense of humor!" Madonna wrote on Instagram Jan. 5. "Don't start the year off with judgment!"

The controversy erupted Jan. 4 after Madonna posted a photo of her son Rocco Ritchie with two friends holding a bottle of gin.

The picture, which was taken in the Swiss Alps, also shows two vodka bottles surrounding the teen. "The party has just begun! Bring it, 2014," Madonna wrote in the photo caption.

Many people immediately criticized Madonna for promoting or condoning underage drinking, since both of Rocco's friends also appear to be under age 21, the legal drinking age in the United States. The legal drinking age in Switzerland is 16 years old.

"Booze is not something to make jokes about. Period!" said one commenter. Another wrote, "You gotta know what kind of signals it sends not only to her son, but also to kids around the world."

Other fans leaped to Madonna's defense, saying people shouldn't judge. "Rocco is adorable and I think it's really cool that Madonna, and her family, post any pics," wrote one fan. "The picture is what it is. Let it be. Don't speak."

Meanwhile, Madonna, 55, insisted her son did not drink any alcohol, and said people need to lighten up. Madonna, a longtime fitness fanatic who works out up to two hours a day, rarely drinks alcohol herself.

Rocco revealed in a 2012 interview that Madonna is a strict mom. "She's very strict, but in a good way," he said.

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