The acquittal of Kyle Rittenhouse by a jury in Kenosha, Wisconsin, has divided Americans. Outraged Democrats called this a miscarriage of justice, while Republicans hailed it as due process and cautioned against malicious prosecution.
Rittenhouse, 18, has been charged with murdering two participants in the August 2020 riot and injuring another. He was found not guilty on all counts on Friday, after the jury deliberated for four days amid intense media coverage.
WATCH: Kyle Rittenhouse found not guilty by Kenosha jury
“This verdict is disgusting and it sends a horrible message to this country”, Bill de Blasio, outgoing mayor of New York tweeted, urging “Stricter laws to stop violent extremism within our own nation.”
“Anthony Huber and Joseph Rosenbaum are victims. They should be alive today. The only reason they aren’t is because a violent and dangerous man chose to take a gun across state lines and start shooting people. To call it a miscarriage of justice is an understatement ”, he added.
Anthony Huber and Joseph Rosenbaum are victims. They should be alive today. The only reason they aren’t is because a violent and dangerous man chose to take a gun across state lines and start shooting people. To call it a miscarriage of justice is an understatement. https://t.co/TwaI2ghgM5
– Mayor Bill de Blasio (@NYCMayor) November 19, 2021
The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) described Rittenhouse’s actions as “Violence in defense of white supremacy” and the riot of August 2020 as an incident in which “The community rose up to exercise their right to protest under the First Amendment after police shot a black man in the back.”
“Despite Kyle Rittenhouse’s conscious decision to cross state borders and injure one and kill two people in protest of the shooting of Jacob Blake by police, he was not held accountable for his actions.” , he added. argued the ACLU.
Despite Kyle Rittenhouse’s conscious decision to cross state borders and injure one and kill two people protesting the shooting of Jacob Blake by police, he has not been held accountable for his actions. Unfortunately, this is not surprising.
– ACLU (@ACLU) November 19, 2021
Congressman Jerrold Nadler (D-New York), chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, tweeted that the “A heartbreaking verdict is a miscarriage of justice and sets a dangerous precedent that warrants federal scrutiny” by the Department of Justice (DOJ).
“Justice cannot tolerate armed people crossing state borders looking for trouble while people engage in a demonstration protected by the First Amendment,” he added.
“They were burning the city” was the response of the Republican committee.
Most members of the Congressional GOP have remained silent on the Rittenhouse affair, with the notable exception Rep. Thomas Massie (R-Kentucky) and related newcomers Matt Gaetz (R-Florida) and Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Georgia).
On Friday, Greene called her colleague Ayanna Pressley (D-Massachusetts), a member of the so-called “squad” of Progressive Democrats, for calling Rittenhouse a white supremacist.
.@AyannaPressley you owe Kyle Rittenhouse an apology NOW. We will continue to argue that in America the accused are innocent until proven guilty. Kyle Rittenhouse was declared NOT GUILTY. His white skin does not make him a white supremacist and the AR-15 saved his life. pic.twitter.com/VSXhOusNeQ
– Marjorie Taylor Greene (@mtgreenee) November 19, 2021
President Joe Biden himself apparently hinted that Rittenhouse was a member of a racist militia during the 2020 campaign, for which he never recanted or apologized.
The current president, @Joe Biden, called Rittenhouse a white supremacist in the absence of evidence. I want to pause to drive the point home: The most powerful man on the planet used his influence and authority to vilify a teenager as that teenager faced bogus political charges. pic.twitter.com/Qjt7sSGD7S
– Drew Holden (@ DrewHolden360) November 19, 2021
“I stand by what the jury concluded. The jury system works. We must comply with it ”, Biden said Friday, minutes after the verdict was announced. He later said the verdict had left him “To feel angry and worried” Nevertheless.
The aspiring members of Congress were even more outspoken. Author JD Vance argued that although Rittenhouse was indicted was a “Total embarrassment” who exposed the American judicial system as “a big joke.”
Blake Masters, who is running for a Senate seat in Arizona, said the prosecution case had been “Built on lies and deceit” and that the American judicial system is “under siege”.
“When lies like this spread without consequence, a republic like ours cannot survive. When a society celebrates Antifa looters, arsonists and pedophiles as heroes, while turning brave people like Kyle Rittenhouse into villains, it is a society that soon comes to this world ”, The masters tweeted.
When lies like this spread without consequence, a republic like ours cannot survive. When a society celebrates Antifa looters, arsonists, and pedophiles as heroes, while turning brave people like Kyle Rittenhouse into villains, it’s a society that soon comes to this world.
– Blake Masters (@bgmasters) November 19, 2021
The verdict also prompted ordinary Americans to wonder whether people who were censored or banned from social media platforms for mentioning Rittenhouse would get their accounts – or their jobs, for that matter. A Norfolk, Va., Police officer was fired in April after it was revealed he had donated $ 25 to the Rittenhouse Defense Fund.
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