Kyle Rittenhouse and ‘White Male Supremacy’

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by Gregory Hood, The Unz Review:

Kyle Rittenhouse shot three white men in Kenosha, Minnesota last year. Nonetheless, his case is the largest racial controversy in the country today, drawing far more media attention than the Ahmaud Arbery case or the civil suit against Unite the Right organizers in Charlottesville.

Mr. Rittenhouse — whom the police once identified as “Hispanic” in a separate, traffic case — was protecting property and people in Kenosha during a riot by Black Lives Matter supporters. He shot his attackers on the second night of disorder. The National Guard is on standby in Kenosha because trouble may result after the verdict. If the Guard had been used last year, Mr. Rittenhouse probably would not have had to go to Kenosha.

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Mr. Rittenhouse’s critics see him not just as a young man, but as a stand-in for a whole system. Ibram Kendi, the MacArthur Genius Grant recipient and well-known “antiracist” author, sweepingly declared that Derek Chauvin and Kyle Rittenhouse “compressed 413 years of American history into a cellphone video” that revealed the “violent ‘self-defense’ of white male supremacy.” He also invoked “colonialism, capitalism, slavery and slave trading, Indian removal, manifest destiny, colonization, the Ku Klux Klan, Chinese exclusion, disenfranchisement, Jim Crow, eugenics, massive resistance, ‘law and order,’ Islamophobia, [and] family separation,” all “in the name of defending life or civilization or freedom.” It’s quite a burden for the 18-year-old to bear.

Mr. Kendi’s blather notwithstanding, what happened is more straightforward. The New York Times and NBC News have broken down exactly what happened that night. One Joseph Rosenbaum, a sex offender who was taunting Kyle Rittenhouse and screaming racial slurs before the incident, was the first attacker. He threw a plastic bag at Rittenhouse (which may have contained a chemical bomb) and allegedly lunged for Kyle Rittenhouse’s weapon. A crowd then chased Mr. Rittenhouse, who fired in what seems like clear self-defense.

However, the prosecution in this case has argued that the “crowd was full of heroes” trying to disarm an “active shooter.” Mr. Rittenhouse was running away from his attackers, hardly typical active-shooter behavior. The prosecution has emphasized Mr. Rittenhouse’s AR-15 and “full metal jacket” ammunition. If Mr. Rittenhouse had wanted to kill people at random, he could have done so easily.

Nonetheless, that may not matter. What jurors feel about the political meaning of Kyle Rittenhouse may determine his fate. Certainly, journalists and activists agree with Mr. Kendi. Kyle Rittenhouse is a stand-in for whites, and they want him to suffer or die.
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