The Other McCain

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Some Further Thoughts on Kenosha: Predators and Their Preferred Prey

Posted on | August 28, 2020 | Comments Off on Some Further Thoughts on Kenosha: Predators and Their Preferred Prey

If you want to know what happened Tuesday night in Kenosha, Wisconsin, read Shelby Talcott’s eyewitness account at the Daily Caller. Any competent attorney could make the case that Kyle Rittenhouse acted in self-defense, but that doesn’t mean Rittenhouse isn’t a damned fool.

Seventeen years old, showing up at a scene where riots are expected, carrying an AR-15 — well, I’ve done some foolish things in my life, but that’s one obvious error I’ve managed to avoid. My general game-plan in life is to stay out of prison or the graveyard, two destinations where most would-be tough guys go, usually sooner rather than later.

Richie McGinniss of the Daily Caller actually interviewed Rittenhouse before the “mostly peaceful protest” erupted in chaotic violence:

What do you notice about Rittenhouse there? What stands out to me is his endomophic baby-fat physique. He has the narrow-shouldered, pudgy body of a boy who spent most of his youth on the sofa, and probably never played organized team sports. (My childhood coaches would have had that fat boy running laps and wind sprints until he collapsed.) To put it bluntly, the boy looked weak, and weakness invites aggression.

Excuse me for being judgmental like this. Certainly, I am nobody’s idea of a macho badass, but you’re never going to find me in the middle of a riot, or hanging out in a biker bar, or some other similarly dangerous situation where my presence might tend to invite aggression. A skinny guy like me doesn’t survive to become a grandfather if he doesn’t develop the kind of situational awareness that keeps him away from violence.

If you’re headed into the danger zone and a pudgy kid named Kyle wants to roll with your crew? Sorry, boy — this ain’t the place for you.

What’s weird is, the other guys in Kyle’s crew seemed to recognize that he was the weak link in the chain. If you’ll watch this video posted by Julio Rojas, you’ll see the crew being confronted by the increasingly hostile mob. There’s a good look at sex offender Joseph Rosenbaum, in a burgundy T-shirt, at the 0:16 mark of the video:

Watch carefully, and at the 0:44 mark, you see Kyle (light green shirt) get grabbed from behind by a member of his crew, who seems angry about Kyle’s behavior and shoves him toward the rear. What was that about? I don’t know, but it seems clear that the guy who grabbed Kyle felt that he was endangering their mission. I suspect that Kyle’s weak, pudgy appearance had attracted the hostile attention of Rosenbaum, who had spent more than a decade in prison, where inmates tend to develop a keen perception for such things. Just three years earlier, Rosenbaum had been an inmate in Arizona, and had shown up for this riot looking for trouble. We should not be surprised that he picked out Kyle as a target.

Being “street smart” involves situational awareness and an ability to spot trouble. Anyone watching that video could see Rosenbaum was looking for an opportunity to get in a fight with someone, and of course, a bully would naturally seek the weakest possible opponent.

Everybody’s analyzing video in an attempt to exonerate Kyle, and a strong case can be made for self-defense, but everybody knows that really he never should have gone to Kenosha. It was a mistake for him even to leave home that night. On the other hand, he did kill two rioters and seriously wound another, so his marksmanship can’t be faulted, but we don’t need to turn our streets into shooting galleries for teenage boys who want to engage in militia cosplay games. Some people are ready to see Civil War II break out in America, but I’m not one of them. Civil War I was a bad enough idea, and I’ve got the hunch that a 21st-century sequel would be even worse. So if you’re the parent of a pudgy teenager, tell him to stay home the next time there’s a riot.



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