Weekend Ethics End Notes, 11/21/21: Rittenhouse Hangover Edition

July 5 Hangover

Arghh. Here’s one more thing to blame on Kyle Rittenhouse: in focusing on the deranged reactions to the verdict yesterday, I missed the opportunity to flag the anniversary of a landmark in world ethics: the beginning of the Nuremberg war crime trials on November 20, 1945. The trials were conducted by an international tribunal made up of judicial representatives from the United States, the Soviet Union, France and Great Britain. The defendants faced charges ranging from crimes against peace, to crimes of war, to crimes against humanity. The trials lasted 10 months and consisted of 216 court sessions.

There is no question that had the war turned out differently, it would have been Allied generals and officials facing war crimes charges. It is often said that the trials were unprecedented, but there was a precedent, and it was cited as one at the time: the 1865 trial of Capt. Wirz, the Confederate Commandant of the Andersonville prison. That trial raised many of the same ethical issues as its successor. I have serious reservations about the ethics of the Nuremberg Trials, and I am sure that in this I am reflecting the objections of my father, a WWII veteran who felt they were the height of hypocrisy. “All wars are crimes against humanity,” he said.

On October 1, 1946, 12 Nazi leaders were sentenced to death. Seven others were sentenced to prison terms ranging from 10 years to life, and three were acquitted.

1. Sorry, more Rittenhouse ethics offenses:

  • After the verdict came down, a video posted online and filmed by student Deaquan Nichols described Rittenhouse as being charged “with murdering and taking away two beautiful Black lives.” The video appeared on the Instagram account of James Madison University. It is amazing how many people publicize their passionate opinions that are based on no knowledge or understanding of what the hell they are talking about. Is social media at fault for this?
  • Here’s the NBA making a fool of itself again:

NBA blather

Rioters are vigilantes, you know….

  • More celebrity nonsense: Ellen Burstyn, one of my favorite actresses, tweeted that the verdict showed that the U.S. is ruled by authoritarians. No, dear, an authoritarian government, which most of the anti-Rittenhouse mob would like just fine as long as it was woke enough, would have just declared Rittenhouse guilty and locked him up without requiring the prosecution to prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. “This is a devastating blow.” said Emmy Rossum. Why is a teenager being saved from decades in prison because of a stupid lapse in judgment a “blow” to a millionaire actress? What is the reason for these people’s insane mania to punish this kid for his imagined crimes against anti-white, anti-police fanaticism? I’ve followed court cases and trials for most of my life, and I can’t think of a single decision or verdict that I would describe as a “blow.” (Rossum is virtue-signaling, that’s all.)
  • Chelsea Handler delivered a comment that informs us that she can’t be trusted: “Tamir Rice was 12-years-old when he was killed for holding a toy gun. Kyle Rittenhouse killed 2 people and was found not guilty. A justice system built by white people, to benefit white people, while families who have lost loved ones are given no solace.”  Tamir Rice wasn’t “killed for holding a toy gun.” He was shot by a poorly trained officer who had been negligently told by a dispatcher that an adult was brandishing a real gun in a public space. If you can’t make your argument using real facts, your entire position is suspect. Does Chelsea realize that the men Rittenhouse shot were also white? It doesn’t sound like it.

2. To be fair, not all actors are knee-jerk morons. Here is “Black Hawk Down” actor Matthew Marsden rebutting a tweeter who lamented that Rittenhouse had “killed innocent people.”

“Anyone wanna educate this guy? You mean the convicted child rapist that threatened to kill him and used the n word over and over? Or the guy that pulled the gun on him? Or the dude that was hitting him in the head with a skateboard? Look into their criminal records.”

This is the information that the defense was blocked from introducing in court, and properly so. However, when the assertion is made that the three men shot by the teen were just dedicated, peaceful, noble social justice protesters and the salt of the earth, that’s called “opening the door.” That’s why the prosecution had to be very careful about characterizing them in exalted terms.

3. Things I learned in a New York Times “news analysis” of the case:

  • Some critics of the verdict said that the trial was about “whether people have the right to carry a loaded gun in public.” No wonder they are confused. In Wisconsin, people—of all races— do have the right to carry a loaded gun in public. The trial wasn’t about that, because the law is the law. The vast majority of the railing against the verdict was based on the fact that the jury didn’t ignore the law.
  • The New York Times is still publicizing the lie that Rittenhouse carried his gun across state lines. The article included this quote from Josh Horwitz, the executive director of the Educational Fund to Stop Gun Violence: “Only in America can a 17-year-old grab an assault weapon, travel across state lines, provoke a fight, kill two people and injure another and pay no consequences.” Did the Times note that this was a false characterization? Does a bear use public rest rooms?
  • “Unrest” is the agreed-upon cover-word for “riots, violence and looting” when Black Lives Matter is involved. I had begun to notice this a while ago. No mention of rioting in the Times story, just “unrest,” as if the mob that trashed all those Kenosha businesses was just suffering from insomnia.
  • “Although the weapons charge against Mr. Rittenhouse was dropped, the case against his friend Dominick Black, 19, who purchased the Smith & Wesson military-style semiautomatic rifle for him at an Ace Hardware store in northern Wisconsin in May 2020, is still pending, with a court hearing scheduled next week. Mr. Black faces two counts of intentionally giving a dangerous weapon to a person under 18 causing death, and could face up to six years in prison if convicted, though legal experts say Mr. Rittenhouse’s acquittal will greatly bolster his defense. Yet the failure of prosecutors to secure a conviction — or even successfully pursue a weapons charge against Mr. Rittenhouse — underscored the at times confusing and inconsistently enforced state firearms regulations.”

I sure didn’t know this part of the story. So the 19-year-old who bought the rifle for Rittenhouse may be punished, while the kid who used the gun and shot three people wasn’t. I know, I know: the crime was completed when the gun was given to Rittenhouse, and what he did with it afterwards is irrelevant. I still think jurors are going to have a hard time getting their minds around that one.

8 thoughts on “Weekend Ethics End Notes, 11/21/21: Rittenhouse Hangover Edition

  1. Mr. Black faces two counts of intentionally giving a dangerous weapon to a person under 18 causing death

    This is the same statute that Rittenhouse was charged under. The judge in the Rittenhouse case dismissed that charge on the grounds that the statute specifically states that for a person over the age of 15 (like Rittenhouse), a “dangerous weapon” does not include a rifle like Rittenhouse’s unless it is short-barreled, which his was not. If the judge in Black’s case agrees, then the charges against Black should be dismissed.

  2. The left only cares about anything when it helps their narrative. BTW, some of my friends have said that, even though the Allies won WW2, once the UN got off the ground they should have tried many of the allied leaders for crimes against humanity. The list was…interesting. Truman and Churchill topped the list, the first for authorizing the atomic strikes on Japan and the internments, the latter for authorizing the air blitz against Germany and use of colonial troops. Others on the list included Chief of the Air Staff Sir Charles Portal, Bomber Command chief Sir Arthur Harris, and No. 3 Group commander Ralph Cochrane, intelligence officer Alexander Scotland, SAS first commander David Stirling, submarine commander Anthony Miers, submarine admiral Max Horton, army commander Sir Bernard Montgomery, corps commander Douglas Alexander Graham, and many more, and that’s just the Brits. Apart from Truman, Eisenhower, Nimitz, MacArthur, Halsey, Air Force commanders Carl Spaatz and Jimmy Doolittle, Army General Raymond Hufft, 11th Armored Division commander Charles Kilburn, Major General Troy Middleton, and many more Americans would have also faced life imprisonment (my friends were against the death penalty on principle) for their actions.

    You really can’t win with dyed-in-the-wool leftist idiots, so there really isn’t any point in trying. Facts just don’t matter to them. The Bible tells us not to waste time casting pearls before swine, and a more secular saying is not to bother trying to teach a pig Shakespeare, because it’s frustrating for you and annoying for the pig. To them, you’re just an apologist for a racist murderer, which puts you in the same category as Derek Chauvin. To them the only question is what color are you and which political party do you belong to. Give the wrong answers, and you are scum, worthy only of being thrown in prison for life, lest you interfere with a people’s revolution.

    • Sounds like they consider it a war crime to be in the military. With that mentality, there’s not much to be done. There’s one name I don’t believe I saw on that list, for some reason: Josip Stalin. Hmmm.

      One other thing regarding the Rittenhouse narrative. I suspect that the reason they make so much of the ‘crossing state lines’ false narrative is that they figure it somehow makes what he did (if he had actually done it, which he didn’t) a federal crime, i.e. an interstate crime.

      Correct me if I’m wrong, but it sounds like they’re confusing the situation where someone commits a crime and then flees across state line, e.g. kidnapping or slavery. But traveling from one state to another, armed or not, is not per se a crime.

      Also, where there are federal statutes regarding kidnapping across state lines, for example, did Congress have to specifically define that as a federal crime? In other words, in common law, does the simple act of committing a crime in one state and then travelling to another state (or country for that matter) automatically make you a federal fugitive?

      • The Left and Big Media don’t care about federal prosecution. They harp on crossing state lines nonsense to further the narrative that a white supremacist from way far away traveled fast armed to the teeth to Kenosha and was messing in something where he didn’t belong: a local protest against police brutality that resulted in the canonization of St. George of the Floyd and beatification of Jacob Blake, even though her us counted among the living as we speak. His sainthood is inevitable, though.

        Now, we learned some monster drove an SUV into a holiday parade, possibly killing some and injuring many others. I am sure Rittenhouse did it, planned it, approved at, or something.


  3. About Dominick Black and the purchase of the AR15. It is illegal for anyone to purchase a firearm for another person if that other person cannot legally purchase or posess the firearm themself. In Wisconsin, there is a form that is filled out when a person purchases a firearm and one of the questions the purchaser must answer is are you purchasing this firearm for another person, if you answer that question NO and you are actually purchasing the firearm for someone else then you have committed a felony.

  4. There was something very good that came out of the war crimes tribunal at Nuremberg in 1947, the Nuremberg Code regarding medical experiments which the United States of America is flagrantly violating with their vaccine mandates. Forcing people to participate in a medical experiment with vaccine mandates, yes the COVID-19 vaccines are experimental, violates their innate human rights.

    Here is the first of ten points in the Nuremberg Code (the bold text is me highlighting that part)…

    The voluntary consent of the human subject is absolutely essential. This means that the person involved should have legal capacity to give consent; should be so situated as to be able to exercise free power of choice, without the intervention of any element of force, fraud, deceit, duress, overreaching, or other ulterior form of constraint or coercion; and should have sufficient knowledge and comprehension of the elements of the subject matter involved as to enable him to make an understanding and enlightened decision. This latter element requires that before the acceptance of an affirmative decision by the experimental subject there should be made known to him the nature, duration, and purpose of the experiment; the method and means by which it is to be conducted; all inconveniences and hazards reasonably to be expected; and the effects upon his health or person which may possibly come from his participation in the experiment.

    The duty and responsibility for ascertaining the quality of the consent rests upon each individual who initiates, directs, or engages in the experiment. It is a personal duty and responsibility which may not be delegated to another with impunity.

    NOTE: How many people in the United States do you honestly think fully understand that the COVID-19 vaccine they got was experimental? That fact has been successfully buried by the pro vaccine propaganda cabal.

    You can find a link to a pdf document of the actual Nuremberg Code in my blog post Nuremberg Code vs Vaccine Mandates.

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