Jacob Blake was shot 7 times in the back by a Kenosha police officer after being tased, walking back to his vehicle and opening the door. Over the last few days, the first thing that people went to, some without even looking at the video, was to see if he had a criminal record and justification for his shooting. He is now paralyzed from the waist down.
During the protests that followed, Kyle Rittenhouse shot and killed two people and wounded another person to the point where they are going to lose their arm. He is a 17 year old kid that legally should not have had a long rifle. He managed to kill two people, walk right by the police as they drove by with their armored vehicles as witnesses were pointing him out as the gunner. He was able to flee the state. He was later arrested and charged. They brought him in peacefully without killing him.
One man was black. One kid was white. Not only was Kyle allowed to walk on by, but earlier in the night, he was given water by the police and was thanked for being there. Kyle came in from out of town (Illinois) to “protect the businesses”. He RSVP’d to the “Kenosha Militia” and mobilized to “back up the police”. These are not hearsay, this is all from either the images accompanying this post or videos that I have watched (Also included).
In this clip at the 29 second mark, you hear Kyle state that he just killed somebody.
At the 52 second mark, you hear the police commend and send their appreciation for an armed militia that has not had any police training, de-escalation training, nor vetted to even see if they are of age. Kyle is spotted among them (Look for the green shirt and orange shoulder bag.
And this guy could be bragging but based on the second link, not likely.
Lets get some of the facts out of the way.
Kyle came in from Illinois to an area that is unfamiliar to him, and he is unfamiliar to anyone there. He is not a local Kenosha resident. He RSVP’d to go “back the blue”. He is 17 and not legally allowed to own a firearm let alone an AR.
The incident: The footage begins with Kyle running from the crowd… by himself. Someone is chasing him. He was not in a group. He went by himself into a crowd of emotionally charged protesters. He was chased by one man that threw a punch, knocking him down. He rolled and lifted his AR in the direction of the gathering 4 or 5 people (with many more in the outskirts). He didn’t hesitate. Didn’t warn. Just fired.
I get it. He’s 17. He was in WAY over his head and did not have any discipline on de-escalation because that’s not his job. He was scared. Fired to try and do what he thought was saving his own life.
BUT. Whether he was attacked or not, he still discharged his AR. Multiple witnesses were pointing that out to the police. The gunfire was loud enough to where that would have been heard by the police and yet, the police ignored the eye witnesses, the gunshots, and drove by Kyle, equipped with an AR strapped to his back, with his hands up.
Pause for a moment.
When Jacob Blake was walking to his car, the officer told him to “drop the knife” (conflicting reports say he didn’t actually have a knife). He was walking away from the officers. He opened his car door and the shots rang out. Kyle was walking towards the officers, armed with a long rifle. He wasn’t even stopped. What are the differences here?
My next statement is coming from past evidence documented for years and years in the past. If that were a black man, walking towards police with an AR Strapped to his back, arms up or not, Not only would he have been approached at gunpoint, “Until they could assess the situation” he would have been detained, disarmed, and cuffed, if not tased/shot. Instead, 4 Armored vehicles with police officers drove right on past.
Kyle has been arrested and charged with first degree murder. He fled the state of Wisconsin in order to try and evade. The Kenosha Police need to be held accountable for working with a militia that had no right to be “soft deputized” and enforce the law that is supposed to come from trained police officers. The “trained” police officers of Kenosha should have sent the militia packing as, like what has happened in Portland, bringing armed, untrained civilians into the mix is going to cause far more harm than good.
Why is communication so hard. You have a group of people wanting answers and they are met with non answers, threats of violence, or actual violence. They are told to shut up and go home. “You’re not wanted here”. “Don’t break the law and you’ll be fine”. Breonna Taylor, Elijah McClain and dozens upon dozens of others would speak to the contrary.
Why is it so hard to denounce this behavior from the President? From the Local, State AND Federal level? Where are the Christians that are all about being pro life, love and understanding, willing to actually listen and reason with the people protesting?
Lastly. Why is it that, when a person of color is shot or murdered, the INITIAL questions of if they have a criminal past or if they are a “bad hombre”? Their past is dissected immediately to justify their killing at the hands of the police but when someone like Kyle kills protesters, there is mass support (at the time I’m writing this, the hash tag “Self Defense” is trending and the replies are disgusting.
Let us not forget Dylan Roof. After killing people in a church, the police treated him to Burger King before bringing him to jail. This should not be normal. But it is. I saw a post made by a man that is two towns over from where I live stating “Sadly he will face some sort of firearms charges at the very least. Can’t get away from the fact his is a minor with a firearm. He did good work tho.”
Do you see what this is birthing? People that think this are getting the idea that it’s open season. That they have a right. That anyone that does something like this did good work. This is not good work. This makes the world less safe for people of color. This makes it less safe for allies.
This is indefensible. This is undeniable. Whether you agree with the protests or not. Whether they were looting or not. The treatment of these incredibly close proximity issues shows clearcut that not all suspects are treated equal. This is why we march. This is why we protest.
Black Lives Matter. #JusticeFor will not be my first name.
EDITED to UPDATE: It has been brought to my attention that I have the order of events wrong. The first video I posted is showing the aftermath of the first person he killed. When he runs off after saying “I just killed somebody” on the phone, he THEN runs out to the street. The person that is chasing him and attacking him with the skateboard is the second person that was shot and killed. Claiming self defense from a situation you created… is not self defense. Along with that, once again.
He is 17. Carrying an AR unlawfully across state lines and he murdered two people and maimed another. For all of the people that shout “He should have complied…” in reference to black people being killed by the police, well, Kyle should have complied with the law. Two people would not be dead and he would not be facing first degree murder charges.