Streetwise Professor

November 21, 2021

The Rittenhouse Rorschach Test

Filed under: Politics — cpirrong @ 5:45 pm

The Kyle Rittenhouse trial has ended as it should, with his acquittal on all charges. Any fair viewer of the evidence would reach the same conclusion as the jury, namely, that Rittenhouse shot, and shot and killed, in self-defense.

That is an encouraging outcome, but it must be said that the case did not begin as it should have: it never should have begun at all. The prosecutors were in possession of all this evidence, and indeed (outrageously) in possession of other exculpatory evidence that they concealed from the defense. Absent the hyper-political atmosphere that prevailed after the August 2020 riots in Kenosha during which Rittenhouse shot three people, a fair-minded prosecutor would not have brought charges at all.

That’s the way I see it. It is obvious, however, that many do not see it that way. Like some modern Dreyfus case, Rittenhouse’s has proved a political Rorschach Test: for every person like me that sees it my way, there is another (perhaps more than one, alas) that sees it completely differently. Instead of an unjust prosecution resulting in a just verdict, these people see this as a righteous prosecution resulting in a travesty of justice. Indeed, a travesty of justice that demonstrates that white supremacy indeed reigns supreme in America, and that white supremacist vigilantes can kill with impunity.

Watch any establishment media coverage, and you will see the Supremacist Narrative on display virtually 24/7. I could provide literally hundreds of examples, but this is sadly representative:

Needless to say, I find this utterly delusional–and mendacious. Virtually the entire narrative was built on lies–and things proven to be lies at the trial. Or more pointedly–things that were demonstrable lies before the trial, but which the establishment media repeated ad nauseum–and continues to repeat, verdict notwithstanding. The basic case for Rittenhouse’s alleged white supremacism–a slander repeated by Biden while a candidate in 2020–appears to be that he was white, and shot people at a (mostly peaceful?) “protest” of a police shooting of a black man. He shot three honkeys–kind of weird for a white supremacist, no? Never once has the establishment media presented direct evidence of white supremacist beliefs: no emails, texts, TikToks, tweets, Facebook posts, etc., etc., etc. They have made the weakest circumstantial argument ever to accuse Rittenhouse of being another Dylann Roof. Yet they believe (or at least assert) that their beyond flimsy circumstantial case is God’s truth.

The slander reached its heights when Rittenhouse took the stand (quite courageously, and against the near universal judgment of legal pundits) and broke down in tears. Oh, but those were “white tears” dontcha know according to scumbags like LeBron James and Joy Reid. A manipulative dog whistle that rallied all the defenders of the white race to the defense of one of their legion.

Apparently an 18 year old Olivier has been born. And one canny enough to know how to call forth the white phalanx to save him from the consequences of his actions.

It is disgusting and incredibly divisive that this trial was turned into racial issue. Indeed, it is disgusting precisely because it is so divisive–and because the racial narrative has absolutely nothing to do with the facts.

Many commentators have said that Rittenhouse should not have been there in the first place. From a legal perspective, that matters not a whit. Given that he was there, did he act in self-defense? is the only legal issue, and the one that the jury settled in the affirmative.

My take is that Rittenhouse was extremely naive, and was in Kenosha for reasons that he considered noble and idealistic. Funny, isn’t it, that leftist teens (or somewhat older young people) who act out of self-identified noble reasons with bad consequences are lionized (e.g., Rachel Corrie), but a conservative kid is demonized? Simply because his idea of a noble cause is an anathema to the left.

There’s also the question of whether the people he shot, or shot at (namely, the “jump kick man”), should have been there. Let’s put aside the quite real possibility that Rosenbaum, Huber, Grosskreutz, and Jump Kick Man should have all been in jail or a mental institution, rather than on the streets of Kenosha. Let’s just ask whether since they were at liberty they should have been there wreaking havoc? They were not engaged in anything remotely resembling peaceful protest. They found a place where they could wrap their antisocial pathologies in a gauze of social righteousness–something that the establishment media was fully complicit in.

The left believes its violence is speech, and your speech is violence. But that’s depraved: those who died by violent means were engaged in violence that was not Constitutionally protected speech, regardless of what you think about the Blake shooting. Their psychopathic and sociopathic behavior was encouraged by and validated by the establishment media, making them accessories. In contrast, Kyle Rittenhouse was behaving far more responsibly prior to the confrontation with the child rapist Rosenbaum than Rosenbaum was.

In other words, no riot, no Rittenhouse. So if you want to push back the causal chain to before Rosenbaum started to chase Rittenhouse, push it back to the riots, not to the time that Kyle Rittenhouse perhaps quixotically decided to protect Kenosha from the rioters.

Which brings us to who should have been there, but were not. The civil authorities were completely AWOL: they should have been there but they utterly failed in their duties. In particular, the mayor of Kenosha and the governor of Wisconsin consciously declined to take the measures necessary and sufficient to maintain civil order in Kenosha. They decided–like the “leaders” of many cities in the United States in the summer of 2020 (e.g., Portland, Chicago, Minneapolis, Seattle, and on and on and on)–to capitulate to mob rule. Because social justice. Or something.

If there is blood on anyone’s hands, it is on theirs, first and foremost, if you follow the chain of causation to its logical origin.

I know the foregoing makes the left apoplectic. And perhaps that’s the one solace of this whole sorry, depressing affair. The trial has proved to be the most reliable IFF (identify friend or foe) system I have ever seen. You know whether someone is your friend or foe based on the response to the trial and the verdict: and yes, that goes both left to right and right to left. No bogeys here. Only bandits and friendlies, and you know which is which with certainty. That’s quite useful information to have.

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  1. I am in awe of the jury. Their focus on the facts and the law is exemplary and courageous in the face of the BS they were subjected to.

    Comment by philip — November 21, 2021 @ 7:15 pm

  2. “(outrageously) in possession of other exculpatory evidence that they concealed from the defense”: in England & Wales it would not be merely outrageous but illegal. On the other hand I’ve never heard of a member of the Crown Prosecution Service being jailed for it. I can’t think why.

    As for Scotland I can believe just about anything that’s alleged against the state apparat, which has been substantially corrupted by the SNP government. Maybe concealing evidence is now OK in practice.

    “White supremacist”: to my unAmerican eyes Mr Rittenhouse looks distinctly less white than the guys he shot. Maybe it’s a trick of the light? I’m mildly surprised that nobody on the Left has pointed it out and used it as an excuse to psychoanalyse the fellow.

    I take it that The Media will deny any role in stoking the resentments of the bad, mad black who mowed down those people in Wisconsin yesterday.

    Comment by dearieme — November 22, 2021 @ 6:26 am

  3. Weirdly I had a “wait what?!” moment on Saturday when I read that the victims were all white. There had been no reference to their ethnicity in the UK press I’d read on the case, my implied assumption therefore being that they’d been persons of colour.

    Personally I’m with Joe on this i.e. the jury reached their verdict, justice has been served, end of (did we pass the Rorschach test?). That said, I’m still uncomfortable with the idea of allowing kids to carry ARs…

    Comment by David Mercer — November 22, 2021 @ 6:40 am

  4. @David Mercer
    Would the judgement have been different if the victims had been black?
    Legally it should have made no difference. But I agree, it might have influenced the jury. Wrongly.
    I find it astonishing that you didn’t know the skin colour of the victims. Perhaps your ignorance is shared by CNN, MNSBC and the rest of the democrat media.
    There’s no excuse. Antifa is a largely white movement of disaffected college grads disgruntled that they can’t get jobs in the civil service. Exactly as Lenin and the activists against the Tsar were university bums too. They murdered the guys in post and stole their jobs, leading to the SNAFU that was the dictatorship of the “proletariat”.

    Comment by philip — November 22, 2021 @ 4:52 pm

  5. Anyone who was paying the least attention knew all of the facts within days of the incident. You could view the video(s) at leisure. They were freely available on multiple platforms. Anyone who was ignorant of the basic facts of this case was ignorant by choice.

    Comment by Christopher L Hunt — November 22, 2021 @ 7:05 pm

  6. @Hunt: Well maybe those in certain circles in ‘Murica, but you do know the rest of the world doesn’t fixate on such stories? It may be news to you but there’s a lot of other stuff going on. As for watching the videos, I guess I could of searched them out however I’m in possession of this thing called ‘a life’ which generally precludes such time wasting.

    And did everyone who were allegedly paying attention really know all of the facts within days of the incident, a veritable army of armchair CSI enthusiasts with nothing but the might of the Internet, Tucker Carlson and their fervent imagination to solve the case? Remarkable.

    Comment by David Mercer — November 23, 2021 @ 8:33 am

  7. @David.

    Just to be clear, you won’t waste your “life” learning the facts thru a video, but will spend it here opining on facts you don’t actually know anything about. Got it.

    Comment by The Pilot — November 23, 2021 @ 9:53 am

  8. @ David Mercer
    What’s remarkable is your obtuseness. If no one outside America is interested in this case, why are you here?

    Comment by Christopher L Hunt — November 23, 2021 @ 5:28 pm

  9. The cause of justice according to law was helped by the brazen incompetence of the prosecution.

    The courage and sagacity of the jury gives me hope for the US. Compared to the sea of bigoted slime vomited up endlessly by the media and the left, their conduct shines.

    @DM: I’m not in the States, I’m not American, and I wasn’t really interested in what happened in Wisconsin, given everything else that was happening at the time. And even I knew that Rosenbaum, Huber and Grosskreutz were stale, pale males. Ditch the mainstream media, they have an agenda and that agenda is not to inform their readers; there is an ocean of better, more complete information, and much better analysis and debate, on the internet outside of the mainstream media (e.g, vide supra). And it is all at your fingertips.

    Comment by Ex-Global Super-Regulator on Lunch Break — November 25, 2021 @ 3:49 am

  10. Even if I hadn’t known the facts I don’t think it would take a brain the size of the universe to infer that men in Wisconsin called Rosenbaum, Huber, and Grosskreutz were not terribly likely to be black.

    Comment by dearieme — November 25, 2021 @ 9:05 am

  11. @dearieme–Do not underestimate the cosmic stupidity of the American left.

    Comment by cpirrong — November 26, 2021 @ 6:49 pm

  12. @SWP…I agree with you that, under normal circumstances, the case should not have been brought to trial. In the abstract, no prosecutor would bring such a bad case before a judge.
    However, imagine that you are the prosecutor. You decide not to charge because there is no case. The what?
    Your life would be in jeopardy, your safety would be impossible to secure, and the Burn-Loot-Murder crowd would set fire to the country. So what to do? What would you do?
    First, bring the case. Then present your star witness who can torpedo your case from the stand. Then regularly provoke the judge multiple times (it was a classic ‘Help’ written in lipstick on the mirror)in a way that any L2 would know was irrational. The result was the best that you could hope for, given that we have allowed too many disturbed radical leftists to run around free. That’s our bad, and needs to be addressed.
    Anyone thinking in the prosecutor’s shoes would not drop the case, but they would follow my prescription, which is what this prosecutor did.

    Comment by Richard Whitney — November 29, 2021 @ 8:05 pm

  13. “Let’s just ask whether since they were at liberty they should have been there wreaking havoc? They were not engaged in anything remotely resembling peaceful protest”

    I’m not going to lie man as someone who tries to be as independent from either party as one can possibly get, it’s hard for me to comprehend how you’re justifying any of it. Regardless of whether or not they were “good people”, to say the cause of their deaths was differing in political ideology, and that “the left” is responsible for the lives taken by the one you’re exalting is a bit of willful ignorance.

    I understand more politically invested individuals tend to habitually rationalize the opposing party as the centric cause of all negative consequences. But to a vehemently politically unbiased observer of this chaotic mess, it’s absurd to me that this has become so politically polarized that 99% of people will either totally agree with this or pop a blood vessel just by reading it.

    I’m not one to try and argue that what happened within these cities was justified. However, these pits of degeneracy filled with rioting, looting, vandalism, arson, etc. would almost without fail always start with a group of orderly citizens legitimately wishing to exercise their right to peaceful protest. Whether you agree with their reason for protesting or not is irrelevant considering that’s kind of the point. Just as you have your right to refuse to wear a mask as an “infringement” of your civil liberty (pardon the assumption if inapplicable); other citizens exercising their right to protest are no different. It’s when the sun went down that these maniacs and criminals came out to play. I know it’s convenient for you to generalize the entire left a bunch of braindead baboons who want nothing more than to steal your penis and kill your babies, but realistically; the majority of people in these cess pools weren’t even close to an accurate representation of the parties “values”. Usually the only ones left after sun down would be those specifically looking for chaos. These looters and rioters were in no accurately representative of the left, (not endorsing leftism, just making a case for less bias, I would do the same in arguing that while Rittenhouse might have been completely blinded by his one sided, vigilante esque, political ethics, “WHITE POWERRRR” (supremacy or what have you) was most likely not a driving factor behind his behavior. In fact, I’d go so far as to argue that it was obvious he had good intentions, but that his expectation for people to simply bend to his will because he had a firearm was also probably due to a misrepresentation of the people rioting as some sort of soft, purple haired, pansies that were simply wreaking havoc on the city because they didn’t know any better. I think the overwhelmingly widespread generalization of all democrats as some sort of timid, anti-gun, vegan, communist, objective evil, probably led to him vastly underestimating the crowd he ran into. Considering he wasn’t the only one that was armed, I think it’s safe to say that these were not just your run-of-the-mill leftists protesting a little too passionately. These were high risk individuals, looking to take advantage at a chance to cash out big, or just to wreak havoc.

    I think it’s necessary to concede on one or more of the above questions in order to make the argument that Rittenhouse didn’t go a significant distance out of his way, to the nearest most chaotic shitbucket of a city he could find, for no other reason than to incite a reason to use a firearm

    “Watch any establishment media coverage, and you will see the Supremacist Narrative on display virtually 24/7”

    To be fair, one can’t really acknowledge skewed media , without also acknowledging Fox News skew in the other direction. While some channels may market themselves as unbiased, CNN and FOX don’t even need to bother with accuracy or unbiased reporting anymore. As long as they’ve got their regular viewers they’re not as concerned with how u take that information and use it to shape your perception of the world.

    Sorry, I think I had more to say but writing this has made me so tired (lol), goodnight.

    Comment by andy — December 7, 2021 @ 4:38 am

  14. sorry i went on so many dif rabbit trails there. I think my main point was intended to be while he may have had good intentions, bringing the gun he did to a space so loaded with raw unhinged chaos and anarchy, can’t believably be painted to be anything else.

    i understand ur argument that it wouldn’t hold in a court of law, but that still doesn’t change the gravity of what happened. i mean, lives were lost. lives that would not have been lost, had he not gone there in search of controversy that night. i’m not suggesting throwing the kid in prison to rot a couple years, but i dont think it’s unreasonable to say that maybe, just maybe, there are times we can remove the lense of politics in order to simply acknowledge what that polarization caused.

    regardless of who’s damn fault it was, the rioters, rittenhouse, kenosha police, big man joey, the ghost of george washington, who gives a shit man people died, regardless of who’s fault it was, who’s guilty in a court of law, who was acting in self defense bla bla bla all of that is irrelevant but it’s all we focus on.

    why have we not taken this time to stop and reflect how we can act out of empathy towards our neighbor, show mutual respect towards each other, and actually foster an environment where we can have productive conversations without emotions running so high we lose the point. i think this should be an opportunity for us to learn we do not all have the same experiences in life, nor will we all agree on politics and government, agree to disagree, or start conversations intended to respect eachothers opinions regardless of how different from ours they are, avoid polarizing any further from each other as Americans.

    everyone built their own opinions out of fragmented data from unreliable media outlets. anyways

    i dont think we have to take such extremes to try and wipe our party’s asses, it’s easier for me to say of course as someone who doesn’t necessarily identify with either but idk man sorry for spammin ur post lol

    Comment by andy — December 7, 2021 @ 5:32 am

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