Are you scared yet? If not, warns the WSJ’s Gerard Baker, then perhaps you don’t understand what the reaction to the Rittenhouse trial represents: “how rapidly and how far the poison of this subversive and illiberal dogma has already spread through a political movement and ideology we once called liberal.”
After the Rittenhouse jury’s verdict, President Biden first declared his respect and then, as Gerard Baker, notes in the WSJ, ”pronounced himself—no doubt after consultation with his handlers” angry as well as concerned.
With varying degrees of apoplexy, from President Biden on down, the party’s leaders and its allies emphasized their dismay with or rage at the decision by 12 of Mr. Rittenhouse’s peers, after due deliberation, unanimously to find him not guilty of first-degree murder and lesser charges in the killings of two men and wounding of a third during the August 2020 riots in Kenosha, Wis.
While the follow-up statement paid lip service to the idea that a jury’s decision should be respected, the more striking message was that remarkable emotional response to its unanimous decision.
In the minds of the ranting radicals of the Squad or MSNBC, dimly repeated by the president, these so-called rights—presumption of innocence, due process, trial by jury, proof of guilt beyond a reasonable doubt, etc., are not the bedrock legal protections against overweening authority the Anglo-Saxon jurisprudence has deemed them to be.
In the minds of the regnant left when they find the defendant unsympathetic, they are inconveniences, fetishized excrescences of judicial process that obstruct and subvert the larger and more important objective of social justice. In this increasingly popular account on the left, they are the armor with which the capitalist white supremacists protect their hegemony. As such they can be dismissed.
Are there darker instincts behind the denunciation on the Left of the Rittenhouse verdict? As Mr. Baker notes, even as the President called for restraint, louder condemnations from the Left sounded like incitement of actions that “characterized the Kenosha riots in the first place.”
Maxine Waters Promoting Unrest if Chauvin Verdict Wrong
Rep. Cori Bush of Missouri tweeted: “The judge. The jury. The defendant. It’s white supremacy in action”—just as California’s Maxine Waters had promised unrest if the Chauvin verdict went the wrong way.
Anglo-Saxon Jurisprudence at Work
Juries do sometimes reach the wrong verdict. But no one who followed the critical phases of the Kyle Rittenhouse trial, argues Mr. Baker, “can honestly assert that the evidence proved the defendant’s guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.”
Far from representing some malign flaw in the legal process, it showed the system working at its best.
Originally posted November 24, 2021.
If you’re willing to fight for Main Street America, click here to sign up for the Richardcyoung.com free weekly email.