hris Wallace and Democrats can keep pretending the right is to blame for the violence. But we were in Kenosha, talking to people on the ground. Voters know who the peaceful protesters are and who the rioters are.
If Chris Wallace’s goal during Tuesday night’s debate was to deflect from the months of left-wing violence from Black Lives Matter extremists and Antifa and instead blame it on President Donald Trump and his supporters, he did an excellent job.
“You have repeatedly criticized the vice president for not specifically calling out Antifa and other left-wing extremist groups,” Wallace, the debate moderator, said to Trump. “But are you willing tonight to condemn white supremacists and militia groups, and to say that they need to stand down and not add to the violence in a number of these cities, as we saw in Kenosha and as we’ve seen in Portland?”
Ignoring for a moment that Trump’s criticism of Joe Biden was absolutely warranted and that Wallace asked Trump to condemn white supremacists but did not ask Biden to condemn Black Lives Matter arsonists and looters, the question itself was specious. The violence in Kenosha was spurred by left-wing extremist groups, not white supremacists. We know — because we were there.
It Was Left-Wing Groups that Trashed Kenosha
Kenosha was up in flames, reduced to the same lawlessness that swept Minneapolis, Portland, Atlanta, and now this small Midwest town. Monday night in Kenosha, a day after law enforcement shot Jacob Blake, men and women stood with baseball bats and guns in front of their businesses and homes, trying to defend themselves against the extremist violence of the Black Lives Matter left. Since there weren’t enough police to control the situation, officers focused on defending public buildings, such as the courthouse, while leaving citizens to fend for themselves.
A woman, who said she had lived in Kenosha for more than 40 years, broke down in tears, saying her city felt like a “war zone” and she was “terrified.”
According to locals and reporting, the violence was caused by out-of-state agitators. On Thursday, local and federal law enforcement officials stopped an out-of-state caravan of vehicles filled with fuel cans and illegal fireworks. “The vehicles contained various items, including helmets, gas masks, protective vests, illegal fireworks, and suspected controlled substances,” according to police, who arrested nine people for disorderly conduct.
The vehicles were reportedly connected to the Seattle-based Riot Kitchen, a group of radical-left protesters. While several mainstream media accounts portrayed the group as friendly helpers, the stories couldn’t explain why they were loading up so many cans of gas and why the Riot Kitchen crew fled from police.
Sam, an Indian immigrant who owns a family-run car dealership downtown, lost “every dime” he had, and the 20 people Sam employed have all lost their jobs “for nothing.” Sam said his family had been “in tears” for days after rioters burned his lot two nights in a row, destroying all the cars, and looting his office before burning that as well.
“I’m a taxpayer,” said Sam, distraught that law enforcement did nothing to protect his business, which was left to the mercy of the mob. “This is not the America I came into. … What did we do to deserve all this?” he asked. “I’m a minority too. I’m a brown person. I have nothing to do with this.”
Contrary to what Wallace implied, neither did white supremacists or militia groups. Black Lives Matter rioters were in fact proud to take credit. Sam told The Federalist that more than a week after the Blake shooting, Black Lives Matter rioters came back to his shop in broad daylight to make “music videos” in the wreckage of his business “like they were so proud of it,” taunting him with, “this is what you get.”
Desperate pleas for mercy from the rioters confirmed who was instigating the violence. If business owners were trying to avoid losing everything to white supremacists, they wouldn’t have displayed placards signaling support for BLM and signs reading “minority-owned” in their storefronts — yet that’s exactly what they did.
Kyle Rittenhouse Wasn’t a White Supremacist
Like many other media figures and Democrats, Wallace seemed to be cherry-picking one instance of violence from a demonstrator linked to the political right, at the expense of accurately covering the rampant lawlessness instigated by leftist extremists. Kyle Rittenhouse became the face of so-called right-wing violence in Kenosha.
Rittenhouse, a 17-year-old Hispanic boy who worked as a lifeguard in Kenosha, saw the destruction and violence and picked up his AR-15 to patrol the streets. In a video shot around 10 p.m., Rittenhouse explained his purpose, saying, “People are getting injured, and our job is to protect this business, and part of my job is also to help people. If there’s somebody hurt, I’m running into harm’s way. That’s why I have my rifle, because I need to protect myself, obviously. But I also have my med kit.”
Later that night, things escalated when three shootings left two people dead and another injured. Police apprehended Rittenhouse, the alleged shooter. Videos capturing the shootings suggest Rittenhouse might have been justified in self-defense.
Whether Rittenhouse, an Illinois native, belonged in Kenosha in the first place is debatable, but nothing suggests the boy was motivated by white supremacy or was part of a larger militia group. In fact, the Anti-Defamation League found no evidence he was or is connected to any extremist movements.
Yet Democrats and their friends in the corporate media, such as Wallace, have tried to paint Rittenhouse as a “white supremacist” in order to deflect all blame from the real agitators, left-wing groups such as BLM and Antifa.