There are a lot of newsworthy things going on in the United States in the few weeks. The most notable being the verdict in the trial of Kyle Rittenhouse. There has been a lot of controversy over the verdict, the way the judge acted, and the way the defense presented their case. This article is aimed to give a view of the trial that is not covered traditionally.
The first thing that should be pointed out is many people keep saying this trial was about race. It had absolutely nothing to do with race. All the individuals that are attached to this case were THE SAME RACE. So how can it be labeled racist? To be labeled a racist act, doesn’t the act need to fall under the definition of “racial or ethnic prejudice or intolerance”?
One article posted says that it was racist because the actions took place during an “anti-racist protest.” Multiple news outlets on television during the time this event took place clearly show that the protest had turned violent. Therefore, by definition, this would be classified as a riot in the streets of Kenosha. The minute destruction of property started it was no longer a protest.
The Collins Dictionary defines a protest as, “to make objection to; speak strongly against.” A protest remains calm, with people speaking their minds regarding a certain situation that they do not agree with. For instance, a march in downtown to speak out against violence towards a group. If it remains peaceful, it can be defined as a protest. However, this was not the case in Kenosha.
A riot is defined as, “A concerted action: (1) made in furtherance of an express common purpose; (2) through the use or threat of violence, disorder, or terror to the public; and (3) resulting in a disturbance of the peace.” This would be the definition that fits that event in Kenosha that night. Property being destroyed, fires being set, and people being beaten all fit this definition.
Now the second thing that should be pointed out is how the prosecution displayed their case. It is the prosecutions job to present undeniable evidence that a crime was in fact committed. In this case, the prosecution failed to present a case that provided undeniable evidence.
One notable mistake that the prosecutor made was his handling of the firearm. Proper handling and safety procedures were not followed while the firearm was present in the courtroom. Video footage and photos circulating the internet show that the firearm clearly did not have a magazine. However, there are also no safety locks in place to prevent accidental discharge if a round happened to be in the chamber.
The above images also clearly show that the bolt, which contains the firing pin, is in the closed position. To make this firearm completely safe, there should have been a bolt lock and a trigger lock in place. This firearm has neither of these locks. Therefore, it is unknown to individuals looking on if this firearm is indeed loaded or not. The image also shows that the prosecutor has his finger inside the trigger guard as if he is ready to fire that weapon. Proper procedure is that the finger does not clear the trigger guard until the moment that weapon is being fired.
During the coverage of the trial, there were a lot of mishaps on the prosecutions side. Their star witness, the surviving individual, really put a dent in the prosecution’s case. He admitted in open court that Rittenhouse did not fire his weapon until he had a firearm pointed at him. Which is proper procedure when dealing with any firearm or self-defense related situation.
There are many different definitions for self-defense. Cornell Law defines self-defense as “The use of force to protect oneself from an attempted injury by another.” Another source at dictionary.law.com defines self-defense as “the use of reasonable force to protect oneself or member of the family from bodily harm from the attack of an aggressor, if the defender has a reason to believe he/she/they is/are in danger.”
When the surviving individual pointed his firearm at Rittenhouse, he had every reason to feel as though his life was in danger at that point. Laying and sitting on the ground, as shown in numerous videos, the only form of defense that Rittenhouse had was his firearm. So according to the law, this justified him defending himself.
The other two individuals that died from their injuries were a little different situation. According to video footage, these two individuals were teaming up against Rittenhouse, beating him with weapons (skateboard for sure) and kicking him. With more than one person assaulting Rittenhouse, by law he was justified to protect himself.