In gun debate, Rittenhouse verdict unlikely to be last word

Kyle Rittenhouse walked through Kenosha, Wisconsin with a rifle strapped to his chest and shoulder.

In gun debate, Rittenhouse verdict unlikely to be last word

Kyle Rittenhouse walked through Kenosha, Wisconsin with a rifle strapped to his chest and shoulder.

Merve Dikici
Merve Dikici
14 November 2021 Sunday 13:04
2281 Reads
In gun debate, Rittenhouse verdict unlikely to be last word

Kyle Rittenhouse walked through Kenosha, Wisconsin with a rifle strapped to his chest and shoulder.

According to the friend, the weapon was meant for hunting on a friend’s property in northern Minnesota. Rittenhouse claims that he brought the Smith & Wesson AR style semi-automatic with his to protect property from damage during protests on August 20, 2020. He used it to kill two people and shoot three others before midnight.

After a nearly two-week trial, a jury will shortly decide if Rittenhouse is guilty or not. This could lead to him being sent to prison for the rest of his life. The 17-year-old was forced to defend himself and deter crime, according to his defense lawyers. Or was Rittenhouse, the only person in a well armed crowd to fire on anyone, provoking the violence, as prosecutors claim

This debate is similar to the one that has raged across the country over guns, especially at protests such as the one in Kenosha about the shooting by a white officer Jacob Blake of Jacob Blake , Black man, or other cities regarding pandemic-related restrictions. Rittenhouse is seen as a patriot who defends an American city against destruction, when police are too overwhelmed or unwilling to do so. Some see a reckless kid who is obsessed with guns and looking for trouble.

Rittenhouse, who was still young when he entered Kenosha's streets that night, was a popular attraction. He was, however, just another gun-wielding person for a time.


One of many protests in Kenosha that year was to draw armed militias and counterprotesters. Witnesses included Kenosha Police Officer Pep Morita and others who testified that protesters were also armed.

Moretta stated that "we were surrounded all night" and added "there were probably more people with weapons than we had."

The shooting took place as the US was battling the coronavirus pandemic. It also occurred three months after George Floyd, a Black man, was killed by a Minneapolis police officer. This prompted violent protests in large and small cities. With a rise in homicides, and calls to "defund police," the election between President Donald Trump was heating up.

Experts believe that all of these factors led to an historic spike of background checks required to purchase or possess a gun, which is a key indicator of gun sales. The FBI's National In-Criminal Background Check System database recorded almost 39.7 millions background checks for gun purchases in 2020 -- more than twice the 11.4 million reported in 2010.

Rittenhouse was not old enough to purchase a firearm. In May 2020, Rittenhouse gave money to Dominick Black, his sister's boyfriend. Black purchased the Smith & Wesson gun for him. Black said that the gun was supposed not to be taken away from Black's home, but that it would remain in a safe.

On Aug. 23, a Kenosha officer responding to a call for domestic disturbances shot Blake. Investigators claimed that Blake was armed with an a knife. Protests erupted after the shooting, which saw people set fire to buildings and start fires. At one point, there were over 100 cars on the lot of a car dealer.

Black stated that this was when his stepfather took the guns from his garage safe and brought them inside the house.

Rittenhouse traveled from Illinois to Kenosha on Aug. 25. Black and Rittenhouse helped to clean up the businesses that were damaged by the unrest before returning to Black's home. Both men took their guns with them when they returned to the site of the protests.


Richie McGinniss is the chief video director at The Daily Caller. He arrived in Kenosha from other protests across the country. The Wisconsin law permits some people to openly carry guns. This protest was unique because McGinniss testified that he felt something bad could happen as he followed Rittenhouse throughout the night.

Ryan Balch claimed that he was carrying an AR-style rifle and that he wore body armor to defend himself against protesters who were arming themselves. Balch, a former Army infantryman, said that he used to patrol streets with Rittenhouse. Rittenhouse told Balch that he was 19 years old and was an EMT. Balch thought Balch seemed "a young, impressionable kid" and "a little underequipped, but not inexperienced."

Gaige Grosskreutz was a protester and volunteer doctor who carried a loaded gun. He was a supporter of the 2nd Amendment right for bear arms and said that it was the same day as every other day. "It's keys. phone. wallet. gun.

Grosskreutz was the third victim shot by Rittenhouse that evening. He said that he pulled his gun because he believed Rittenhouse was an active shooter. Rittenhouse had already killed Joseph Rosenbaum and Anthony Huber. Grosskreutz accidentally pointed his gun at the 17-year old, and Rittenhouse shot him in his arm.


Rittenhouse faces a misdemeanor count of possessing a dangerous weapon by an under-18 person in addition to homicide. He testified that he was innocent and was only defending himself when his rifle fired. Prosecutors claim Rittenhouse, a former police youth cadet, was engaging in fantasies about video shooting and was taking them to the streets.

According to David Yamane, Wake Forest University sociology professor who studies gun culture, Rittenhouse is the face for gun owners in America.

He said that this is a common misconception. The Kenosha father who took guns out of his safe during unrest or Grosskreutz was the most common gun owner. Grosskreutz carried a concealed pistol as a matter-of-fact.

Yamane stated that while Rittenhouse's core supporters believe that he did nothing wrong, a larger number of gun owners "are somewhere between." They support Rittenhouse's right in that moment to defend himself, but they also believe he did not have the right to be there and that two people were killed and one was injured without good reason.

Ryan Busse, a former gun industry executive, is now the senior policy advisor to the gun-safety organization Giffords. Rittenhouse is the "avatar" of a customer that the NRA, gun companies, and other gun companies have tried to appeal to. This includes marketing and selling products called the Ultimate Arms Warmonger.

He said that no matter how guilty Rittenhouse is, it won't change the minds of many people about guns.

Busse said, "It's dangerous that he's going be a mascot and a martyr." "Every Rittenhouse moves the window of acceptable behavior. Rittenhouse seems to have moved the window.



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