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Briefings  from SCOPE President, Tom Reynolds

  • 10/03/2020 11:36 AM | Anonymous

    America, Truly A Diamond! (Neil Diamond) by Tom Reynolds

    The far left can’t say enough bad about the America we love, the America which, under our Constitution, has done more for more people than any country in the history of the world.  Forget our imperfections and ignore the rantings of the mob, it’s time to stand up and unapologetically celebrate America and all its done and all it represents.  America is a land of optimism and not regrets.  We’ve got a lot to be proud of and celebrate and that was captured in a Neil Diamond song from a few years ago.

    We've been traveling far
    Without a home
    But not without a star

    Only want to be free
    We huddle close
    Hang on to a dream

    On the boats and on the planes
    They're coming to America

    Never looking back again
    They're coming to America

    Home, to a new and a shiny place
    Make our bed, and we'll say our grace
    Freedom's light burning warm
    Freedom's light burning warm

    Everywhere around the world
    They're coming to America

    Every time that flag's unfurled
    They're coming to America

    Got a dream to take them there
    They're coming to America

    Got a dream they've come to share
    They're coming to America

    My country 'tis of thee
    Sweet land of liberty

    Of thee I sing

  • 09/28/2020 2:39 PM | Anonymous

    Will SCOTUS Protect The 2nd Amendment? by Tom Reynolds

    President Trump has nominated Amy Coney Barrett to fill the vacant Supreme Court (SCOTUS) seat.  Apparently, there are enough Republican votes to ensure her approval by the Senate, unless something unexpected emerges.  That isn’t likely since she has been previously praised by both Republicans and Democrats – before being nominated for SCOTUS.  As the mother of seven children, two are whom are black and adopted from Haiti, there isn’t much room for charges of racism or the Kavanaugh style smears that the left specializes in.  (Although…President Trump is now routinely called a racist in spite of him receiving awards from black rights groups before he ran for President; there are pictures of him being awarded medals alongside Rosa Parks and being congratulated by Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton! So, anything is possible.)

    Democrats attacked Amy Coney Barrett, (or A C B is she will soon be known) at a previous confirmation hearing, for being a Catholic.  However, reliably far-left SCOTUS Justice Sotomayer is also Catholic as are Nancy Pelosi and Joe Biden.  But Barrett may still be pictured as a “Papist” danger to our country, by the Democrats.

    Which brings us to the Second Amendment.  A C B is a constitutional originalist in the tradition of Justice Antonin Scalia.  A C B separates protections for civic rights (voting and jury duty) from individual rights (owning a gun) and believes the government must vigorously protect the gun ownership as an individual right instead of a group right (the militia).  This brings her in line with the Heller and McDonald SCOTUS decisions and sends the left into a panic.  She would bring SCOTUS to 5-3-1 in favor of the 2nd Amendment (or 6-3 if reliably unreliable John Roberts returned to his Conservative roots).

    So, all those gun owners who hate politics and rarely if ever vote can relax and continue their hibernation on election day; SCOTUS will do the heavy lifting for them.
    Wrong!  Wrong!  Wrong!

    The Supreme Court was established under the U.S. Constitution but the number of judges is established by a law passed by Congress and signed by the President.  For about 150 years, that law says there will be nine (9) judges.  Faced with losing control of the judiciary, Democrat leaders have said they will raise the number of SCOTUS judges.  They have also proposed raising the number of other federal judges in order to offset the many appointments President Trump has made.  (Lower court judges aren’t as “exciting” as SCOTUS appointments, so we don’t usually hear about the them).  This effort is known as “packing” the court.  If Democrats gain complete control or if they can leverage their votes on other issues, they will raise the number of SCOTUS justices and then, when in power, they will appoint reliably anti-2A judges to SCOTUS, thereby putting the pro-2A judges into the minority and, in effect, killing the 2nd Amendment.

    This, of course, is completely in line with previous far-left attempts to ignore every law and tradition that works against them, whether or not these laws and traditions are fundamental parts of American history and culture.  They view American history, traditions and culture like statues in a park that are to be toppled by the mob in search of power and control.

    Elections have consequences.  The 2016 election allowed President Trump and the U.S. Senate to appoint and confirm over 200 judges, including two (before A C B) to SCOTUS.  Presumably, most of those 200+ are defenders of the 2nd Amendment.  The far-left would turn this around in an instant if they can gain control.

    Don’t hibernate on November 3rd.  Vote for pro 2A candidates and bring some potential hibernators out of their caves and into the voting booth.

  • 09/25/2020 4:00 PM | Anonymous

    Primary Them Out by Tom Reynolds

    Joe Crowley was a 23 year N.Y. City Democratic incumbent Congressman on the short list to replace Nancy Pelosi as U.S. House Speaker.  In 2016, he was reelected with 147,000 votes, 83% of the total votes cast.  In 2018, he was defeated by Alexandria Octavio-Cortez in the Democrat primary; she won with less than 17,000 votes, 11% of the votes Crowley got in 2016.

    Felix Ortiz is a 26 year Democrat incumbent Assemblyman from N.Y. City who currently serves as Assistant Speaker of the Assembly.  In 2018, he won reelection, unopposed, with 20,738 votes.  In 2020, he was defeated in the Democrat primary by Marcela Mitaynes who got 3,591 votes and won by 272 votes.  Mitaynes got a mere 17% of the votes Ortiz received in 2018.

    This data suggests that even the most entrenched incumbent in vulnerable to being beaten in a primary by a narrow but motivated electorate. All the voters have to do is show up in decent numbers, as it often takes less than 20% of the previous votes cast to defeat the incumbent.

    The data also shows this is one way the radical element of the Democrat Party is taking over.  (Mitaynes could be described as a Democratic Socialist and some would say A O-C is probably best described as an insane Socialist.)  As the saying goes, 75% of life is just showing up and people rabid for power will show up while those that hate politics or are indifferent will stay home and then ask, “wha’ happened”.

    In New York, one must be registered in a party in order to vote in that party’s primary.  In most election districts, a quarter of the registered voters do not register in any party.  Since ours is essentially a two party system, those who register in a non-major political party, that has little chance of a creditable showing, are eliminating themselves from selecting those who will represent them; only the two major party candidates win major elections.

    Shouldn’t Democrats be concerned about the radical left movement of their party?  Shouldn’t Republicans care about Republican legislators without real commitment to basic Republican principles?  What might we do about it?  Thought: primary them out of office.  As we have seen, it will take far less votes to defeat them in a primary than in a general election.

    It’s not easy to primary an incumbent, as the party organization usually sides with the incumbent who has name recognition and resources.  Non incumbents are a bit easier to primary but the party elite often pick their favorite early in the process and throw the party’s weight behind the choice.  But primary upsets do happen, as we’ve seen, if a motivated electorate arises.

    But first, you have to be registered in one of the two parties that count in our system.  To be eligible to vote in next year’s primary, you must be registered as a member of that party.  The rules for registering are a bit complex as to deadlines so it is best to register (or reregister) in a party as soon as possible.  

    If you are not registered in any party, you may like being labelled “independent”, but you are losing your chance to pick the candidates.  Consider registering in a major party, preferably one most in tune with your concerns which, hopefully, includes protecting the Second Amendment.  If you are registered in a minor party, think about why you are registered in that party.  Is it because you believe in that party or is it a protest against the major parties?  I know this is difficult for some people but, if you are just protesting, consider reregistering in a major party. Your party registration does not prevent you from voting for the candidate of your choice in the general election but you will have a voice in selecting one of the two candidates that will likely poll significant votes.

    It seems safe to say that this message about primary voting is definitely not approved by incumbents of either major party. 

  • 09/23/2020 10:54 AM | Anonymous

    Are Democrats Secretly Trying to Elect Trump? by Tom Reynolds

    While not political insiders or a TV talking heads, Americans have the ability to watch, listen and think beyond the propaganda spewed in the media.  As an “innocent bystander”, one can’t help noticing that the Democrat Party appears to be helping Trump with a number of unforced political errors.

    The Democrat Party plan is to release criminals from jail, abolish bail, open the borders to criminals, subsidize illegal immigrants, defund the police and let cities burn to the ground.  Oh by-the-way, in the midst of all this carnage, Democrats also want to take away the right to keep and bear arms, so you cannot defend yourself against the chaos they created. Biden and Harris have come out squarely against the 2nd Amendment. With violence escalating, NICS checks are setting new records, more criminals are on the street and there are more calls to defund the police - taking away guns would not seem to be a smart strategy.  (Or maybe Democrats are going for the suicidal vote.)

    Supporting (or at least not opposing) the riots in cities controlled by Democrat politicians undermines their support in their base.  What does the loss of some votes mean in highly Democrat majority cities?  The cities will probably still continue be Democratic majorities but Democrats carry states like New York in statewide elections because of their overwhelming majorities in cities.  If the majorities decrease enough, combined with increased voting in highly Republican rural areas, this might start to swing statewide contests to Republicans.

    City riots raise fears of violence spreading to the suburbs, which could move the suburban electorate more towards Trump.  People do not enjoy being assaulted and having their livelihood burned to the ground.  More women are buying guns for protection and, given many cities’ prohibitions on gun ownership, many of these women probably live in suburbs.  (The soccer mom is turning into Sarah Palin’s pit bull with lipstick – and a Glock.)

    Now, Democrats are threatening more riots if Trump nominates a Supreme court successor to Ginsburg.  Democrats were silent on the riots (excuse me, peaceful protests) until their polls started dropping.  Now, they are back to threatening more riots!  Democrats really need to rethink their election strategy.

    Can Democrats hold together a coalition of both Sanders and Biden supporters?  Far-left Democrats do not compromise, so Biden has been forced to drop the image of being a moderate, that he held during the primary, and move his image to the far-left.  (Which might explain some of his confusion over whether or not he supports the 2nd Amendment.)  America is not a far-left country and the far-left ideology has to scare moderate Americans.

    Oh yeah, referring to voters as racists isn’t a great way of winning votes, unless the left-wing media can say it often enough to convince those of us who cling to religion and guns that we really are racists.  (Good luck on that!)

    Biden has 47 years of political history in Washington. Democrats blame Trump for every issue but it is easy for Republicans to shoot at Biden’s record (figuratively - nor literally - figuratively).

    Before Ginsburg, the drumbeat amongst Democrats was for Biden to not debate Trump.  In spite of the weak excuses that Democrat politicians will make for no debate, withdrawal would only confirm the concerns that Biden is mentally and physically degenerating.  With 47 years of political experience, he should be expected to shine in debates, not merely survive. (Under the survival narrative, he gets a participation trophy for debating.)  If he is degenerating, the question Democrat strategists are asking themselves is, will he lose more votes by debating or by not debating.    

    Biden is generally ahead in the polls, but Trump is far less behind than four years ago, at the same point, and he is trending upward. In recent years, the polls seem to have a 2-4% bias for Democrats, as they over sample Democrats in their mix.  Then there is the issue of sampling the general population instead of the likely voters, which happens in some polls.  Because of the Electoral College, it is individual states and not the nationwide total that counts, which negates huge Democrat Party majorities in Los Angeles and New York City.

  • 09/22/2020 8:55 AM | Anonymous

    Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Replacing Her by Tom Reynolds

    Ruth Bader Ginsburg is being lauded by the liberal media.  But by gun owners, not so much.  She dissented in 1995 on U.S. v. Lopez saying that she believed Congress can regulate guns in school under the Commerce Clause.  She dissented on the District of Columbia v. Heller decision in 2016, saying that gun ownership was not an individual right but a collective right.  In a 2016 interview with the NY Times she further stated, “I thought Heller was a very bad decision” and she looked forward to reconsidering it. In McDonald v. Chicago, which extended the Heller decision to the states, she joined in the dissent.

    This year, the U.S. Supreme Court decided to pass on nearly a dozen gun-rights-related cases.  This was an admission that the conservative associate justices think Chief Justice John Roberts can’t be trusted to protect the Bill of Rights, with the rest of the court usually divided 4-4.  Since President Trump has proven to be pro-gun and Joe Biden to be anti-gun, the person who nominates the replacement for Bader-Ginsburg is important to gun owners; gun rights could be in the majority at 5-3-1 under Trump or back to 4-4-1 under Biden.

    The left-wing media is ablaze with Republican quotes from 2016 about delaying Supreme Court nominations until the next election.  Missing are quotes from Democrats that they made in 2016. 

    Let’s start with Ruth Bader Ginsburg, herself.  In July 2016 she stated, “Nothing in the Constitution prevents a president from nominating to fill a court seat.  That’s their job.  There’s nothing in the Constitution that says the president stops being president in his last year”.  (This is interesting for two reasons: it reinforces Trump’s position in 2020 and R B G was actually following the Constitution instead of ignoring it.)

    Chuck Schumer said in 2016, “Senate Republicans need to do their job and give Judge Garland (nominated by Obama to succeed Scalia) the hearing and vote he deserves because the American people deserve a fully functioning court. Having a deadlocked, 4-4 court could lead to judicial chaos surrounding environmental protections, voting rights, and so many other issues that are important to everyday Americans…it’s time for the Senate to do the job we were elected to do”.

    In the 2016 Democrat primary debates, Hillary Clinton said, "We must all support President Obama’s right to nominate a successor to Justice Scalia and demand that the Senate hold hearings and a vote on that successor."

    On March 7, 2016, a group of 356 law professors and other legal scholars released a letter (organized through the progressive group Alliance for Justice) arguing that refusing to consider a nomination was a "preemptive abdication of duty that is contrary to the process the framers envisioned in Article II, and threatens to diminish the integrity of our democratic institutions and the functioning of our constitutional government."

    On March 10, 2016, the Democratic Attorneys General of 19 states, Puerto Rico, and the District of Columbia released a letter that said refusal to consider a nominee would "undermine the rule of law…”.

    And finally, in 1992, Joe Biden was for delaying until after the election but was against delaying until after the election in 2016 and now he is back to being for delaying until after the election.

    Oh yeah, Democrats, Antifa and Black lives matter are threatening riots if the nomination is not delayed until after the election.  That used to be called blackmail.

  • 09/16/2020 1:36 PM | Anonymous

    Intimidation as Hate Speech By Harold Moskowitz

                Berrell Trammell was an African-American small business owner.  Often, he stood on a nearby street corner holding a “Trump 2020” sign.  He told a friend that he changed his location to in front of his business because the people at the corner were likely to try to kill him.  At 12:30 P.M. on 7/24/20, he became a victim of a drive-by shooting as he held his Trump sign.  His deep belief in democracy and political free speech likely led to his murder.  What happened to Mr. Trammell can happen to anyone in today’s America.

                When constant political vilification of a political personality and his or her supporters becomes the norm, it leads to predictable results.  Today, it appears constantly on radio, cable news, T.V. sitcoms, late night comedy, and in statements by cultural personalities, sportscasters, athletes and political leaders past and present.  It appears in Hollywood productions, published media and the omnipresent internet blogs and tweets.

                This social cancer must be meaningfully addressed.  One should not have to fear that carrying a sign or wearing something identifying the person as a supporter of a candidate could result in injury or even death.  Likewise, the use of a bumper sticker or a yard sign should not induce fear of property damage.  Additionally, attending a rally or other political event should not subject the attendees to the possibility of a mob of protestors shouting vile obscenities and using violence against them.

                Not only is such vilification aimed at supporters of a targeted political candidate, it is aimed at the National Rifle Association as well.  The same techniques are used to portray the NRA as an evil organization bent on allowing miscreants to illegally obtain weapons, thus making it responsible for the massacres of school children and others.  These vilifiers are willing to condemn the five million men and women who belong to the NRA as being “red neck Neanderthals” who support violence.

                Both vilification movements emanate from the same sources.  These attacks are coordinated propaganda campaigns which follow Hitler’s Third Reich’s “Big Lie” technique.  A lie repeated over and over becomes accepted by all as being true.  They also contain elements from Saul Alinsky’s communist community organizer handbook Rules For Radicals.

                In all cases, coordinated vilification is a form of intimidation designed to alienate the target and to weaken it to the point of destruction.  This radical method to suppress or destroy opposition must be eliminated if our democratic political system is to endure.  It is likely what led to Berrell Trammell’s murder as he exercised his First Amendment rights on a street in Milwaukee.  Constant vilification is truly “hate speech” and potentially causes violence.  Our political “elites” at all levels of government need to step aside from politics and recognize what it really is.  They need to have the backbone to rein it in or face political backlash for inaction.

  • 09/15/2020 3:02 PM | Anonymous

    Comparing Presidential Candidates by Steve Getman

    Rarely in American history – perhaps last in 1860 when Lincoln was elected – has there been such a wide divide between the two major parties and their candidates for President.  Yesterday we compared the Vice-Presidential candidates and today we present the Presidential candidates’ positions on the 2nd Amendment.

    President Donald Trump, a Republican, has been endorsed by the National Rifle Association (NRA), with that group saying he delivered on his promise to protect Second Amendment rights.  Among the reasons:

    • Trump announced his “un-signing” of the anti-gun United Nations Arms Trade Treaty appeared at the NRA-ILA Annual Leadership Forum;
    • He designated gun businesses to be “critical infrastructure” during the COVID-19 pandemic, allowing them to remain open in many areas;
    • Trump loosened regulations on the export of firearms and the online publication of technical information about guns;
    •  He supported right-to-carry reciprocity;
    • Trump has worked to expand millions of acres of public access to law-biding gun owners and to reverse bans on traditional ammunition;
    • After Democrats introduced federal legislation in 2018 to expand background checks and more tightly regulate gun sales and transfers, he threatened to veto the measures;
    • Perhaps, most importantly, the President has appointed a large number of conservative federal judges.  By the end of July 2020, the President had appointed 201 federal judges.  These appointments, some analysts say, have already given a boost to legal challenges to gun control laws.

    Biden’s record on gun control covers 47 years, as a Presidential candidate, as Vice President and as a member of the U.S. Senate.  His record has been replete with anti-gun measures, earning him an “F” from NRA:

    • Biden pushed the Brady Bill and brags he was the person who got it passed;
    • He supported (and supports) the so-called “assault weapons ban;”
    • Biden supported (and supports) closing the so-called “gun show loophole;”
    • He voted against prohibiting frivolous lawsuits against gun manufacturers for gun violence;
    • Biden was asked by President Obama to head up the Gun Violence Prevention Task Force;
    • Biden has endorsed federal handgun bans and gun-owner licensing;
    • He supports banning online sales of weapons and ammunition and requiring background checks for people buying gun kits or 3D printer codes for guns;
    • Biden has referred to 9 mm pistols as “military style weapons;”
    • During a 2019 interview with CNN, Biden explicitly said his administration would support gun confiscation.

    The ratings for 2nd Amendment support seems fairly clear.  Trump gets and A and Biden gets an F.

    Note: Thanks to Steve Getman for researching these facts.

  • 09/10/2020 1:45 PM | Anonymous

    The Ugly History Behind The “Victims” by Tom Reynolds

    The media has tended to paint several “victims” of police shootings in the best possible way, overlooking some rather ugly history.  The actual criminal histories of the “victims” in the Kenosha Wisconsin shootings are described below.

    The Daily Signal wrote about the first person Rittenhouse shot, “Rosenbaum was convicted of sexual conduct with a minor in 2002, according to the Wisconsin Department of Corrections sex-offender registry, government records showed. Rosenbaum also had…open cases in Kenosha: one on bail jumping and another on battery, two counts of domestic abuse and disorderly conduct, according to court records."

    The man who hit Rittenhouse with a skateboard before being shot was Huber.  Per Daily signal, “In 2012, Huber was found guilty of felonious strangulation, two counts of domestic abuse, false imprisonment and use of a dangerous weapon, records showHuber was again found guilty in 2018, this time of disorderly conduct, domestic abuse and repeat offender charges, according to online documents”. 

    The third man, shot in the arm while holding a pistol was Grosskreutz.  Again, per Daily signal, “Grosskreutz was found guilty in 2016 of carrying a firearm while intoxicated — a misdemeanor charge, according to court records.

    The shooter, Kyle H. Rittenhouse has not been convicted of anything.  There was a false claim that he had a record but it was someone with a similar name, Kyle J. Rittenhouse.

    Let’s not forget another “victim”; George Floyd’s death is supposed to be the catalyst of all the riots.  He was arrested on August 2, 1997 for delivering less than one gram of cocaine to someone else and sentenced to about six months in jail. Arrested and charged with theft on September 25, 1998, and again on December 9, 1998 and sentenced to a total of 10 months and 10 days in jail.  On August 29, 2001, Floyd was sentenced to 15 days in jail for “failure to identify to a police officer,” court documents say.  He was arrested and charged for having less than one gram of cocaine on him on Oct. 29, 2002; for criminal trespassing on Jan. 3, 2003; for intending to give less than one gram of cocaine to someone else on Feb. 6, 2004; and for again having less than one gram of cocaine in his possession on Dec. 15, 2005. He was sentenced to about 30 months in jail, total, for those crimes.  In 2007, authorities arrested and charged Floyd with his most serious crime: aggravated robbery with a deadly weapon.  He was sentenced to five years for that.

    Snopes is a heavily left fact checker.  It tried to bury Floyd’s criminal record when it “fact checked” a meme showing Floyd’s true criminal history.  Snope’s short comment, buried in the middle of a very long and almost funny defense of all things Floyd, “The claims in the meme are a mixture of true and falsethe alleged crimes and time periods are mostly accurate, with the caveat that Floyd was convicted of theft in 1998, not armed robbery. But the following information makes other aspects of the post misleading: Not all the crimes resulted in prison time, but rather jail sentences”.  (Oh wow, he went to jail instead of prison!  Calling it prison is so misleading about the poor man’s character!) 

    Amazingly, Michael Reinoehl, the Portland Oregon killer of Aaron Danielson of the Patriot prayer movement, is not being portrayed sympathetically.  According to the Wall Street Journal, he was arrested on June 8 for speeding 111 miles per hour, allegedly under the influence of marijuana and with a concealed and loaded Glock handgun on board.  (He didn’t have a concealed handgun license). The newspaper said he also had his 11-year-old daughter in the car, and at the time he was racing his 17-year-old son.  He failed to appear at his arraignment in July.  (Too busy “protesting”?)

    The Seattle Times reported that Reinoehl was cited by Portland police in July for possession of a loaded firearm in a public place, (a riot?) though at the time of his death there apparently have yet to be charges filed.  (We don’t need new gun laws, just enforce those we have on the books.)

    Maybe there is a reason none of the media jumped on the sympathetic portrayal bandwagon for Reinoehl?  About Reinoehl’s death, his sister is quoted by the Daily Mail stating, “'I wouldn't say at this point that this counts as bad news.

  • 09/08/2020 2:13 PM | Anonymous

    Kenosha Wisconsin Shootings (Part 2) by Tom Reynolds

    Shootings of three people (two fatally) in Kenosha Wisconsin occurred during the rioting that followed the Jacob Blake shooting.  This shows what happens when riots are left unchecked, public officials don’t do their jobs and people are  forced to defend property.  Beware of left-wing DA‘s.


    Per Pierce Bainbridge, the law firm representing Kyle Rittenhouse, he lives 30 minutes away in Antioch, Illinois and he works in Kenosha as a community lifeguard. Rittenhouse decided to help a business owner defend his property from rioters.  He was armed with a Smith & Wesson AR 15 style .223 rifle with a 30 round magazine.  He obtained the rifle in Wisconsin, after he decided to help, (but it is not clear how he got it).

    Pre shooting

    Per Bainbridge, a crowd moved towards the shops Rittenhouse was guarding, where they teased and taunted those protecting the businesses. After the crowd passed the premises, Kyle believed the threat of further destruction had passed.  He became concerned with the injured protestors and bystanders at a nearby gas station and went to it with a first aid kit.

    1st shooting

    Per Bainbridge, after rendering aid, Rittenhouse received word that a second shop, down the street, was the new target. "As Kyle proceeded towards the second mechanic’s shop, he was accosted by multiple rioters who…began chasing him down. Kyle attempted to get away, but he could not do so quickly enough. Upon the sound of a gunshot behind him, Kyle turned and was immediately faced with an attacker (Joseph Rosenbaum) lunging towards him and reaching for his rifle. He reacted instantaneously…firing and striking the attacker."

    A Daily Caller reporter, Richard McGinnis, was close to and behind Rosenbaum.  He told detectives that Rosenbaum was “trying to get closer” to Rittenhouse and Rittenhouse started running away.  He was chased by Rosenbaum and other people. Rittenhouse eventually turned (after a single shot was heard behind Rittenhouse) and faced Rosenbaum with his gun pointed down.  Rosenbaum definitely tried to grab the gun.  Rittenhouse pulled the gun away, raised it and fired four times as they came together. 

    He initial shot that caused Rittenhouse to turn was fired by someone in the crowd, not Rosenbaum.  But Rittenhouse did not know that.

    Immediate aftermath of 1st shooting

    Rittenhouse looked at Rosenbaum on the ground, then ran away with a cellphone to his ear saying, "I just killed somebody." Investigators identified Dominic Black as the friend Rittenhouse had called. 

    Bainbridge explained. "Kyle…faced a growing mob gesturing towards him. He realized he needed to flee for his safety and his survival”.

    2nd and 3rd shooting

    Bainbridge explained that while Rittenhouse was running away from any confrontation, “Another attacker struck Kyle from behind as he fled down the street. Kyle turned as the mob pressed in on him and he fell to the ground. One attacker kicked Kyle on the ground while he was on the ground. Yet another bashed him over the head with a skateboard. Several rioters tried to disarm Kyle. In fear for his life and concerned the crowd would either continue to shoot at him or even use his own weapon against him, Kyle had no choice but to fire multiple rounds towards his immediate attackers, striking two, including one armed attacker”.

    The official Criminal Complaint against Rittenhouse, based primarily on videos, says that Rittenhouse was running away and being chased.  Someone swings at Rittenhouse and knocks his hat off but Rittenhouse continues running.  Eventually, Rittenhouse trips and falls, and while on the ground, a man "jumps at and over the defendant" and Rittenhouse appears to shoot twice at him, but misses.

    According to the complaint, Anthony Huber approaches him with a skateboard, trying to wrestle the rifle away while his skateboard makes contact with Rittenhouse’s shoulder.  Rittenhouse, who was still on the ground, fired at Huber, who later died from the gunshot wound.

    After shooting Huber, the complaint says, Rittenhouse sat up and pointed his weapon at Gaige Grosskreutz.  When Huber was shot, “Grosskreutz freezes and ducks and takes a step back. Grosskreutz puts his hands in the air. Grosskreutz then moves towards the defendant who aims his gun at Grosskreutz and shoots him, firing 1 shot. Grosskreutz was shot in the right arm. Grosskreutz appears to be holding a handgun in his right hand when he was shot."

    2nd and 3rd shooting aftermath

    Rittenhouse got up and continued walking.  Cellphone video shows him still armed, with his hands raised, toward police vehicles. The police drove past him.  Kenosha County Sheriff David Beth told reporters that there was nothing to suggest that Rittenhouse "…was involved in any criminal behavior even though he was armed and walking toward police with his hands up. Someone walking away with hands up, that wasn't out of the ordinary," Beth said. "Officers [were] telling him to get out of the way. They didn't see him as a suspect ... no idea [in that moment] he was involved."

    Rittenhouse is charged with first degree homicides, reckless endangerments and possession of a dangerous weapon while under 18. First-degree intentional murder in Wisconsin doesn’t require premeditation. It just requires that you intended to kill the person. The question is whether he acted in lawful self-defense. He can’t be held criminally liable if acting in self-defense, even if he intentionally killed someone.  There are, of course, legal nuances to this issue.  The Reckless Endangerment charges may be fallback positions if the homicide charges fail.  The Wisconsin statute on possession of a dangerous weapon under 18 is convoluted and actually may not apply to Rittenhouse’s situation.

    Democratic Presidential Nominee Joe Biden condemned Rittenhouse as a member of an “extreme, right-wing militia” and suggested Kyle might be connected to “white supremacists and white nationalists and Neo-Nazis and the KKK.  There has been zero evidence to support this, so far.

  • 09/07/2020 12:01 PM | Anonymous

    Kenosha Wisconsin Shootings (Part 1)  by Tom Reynolds

    Second Amendment defenders in New York should be interested in the Kenosha Wisconsin shootings that are in the news and the subject of subsequent rioting and the typical denunciations by celebrities and athletes.  They involve defensive use of a gun and an overzealous, anti-2A District Attorney.  Today’s post, Part 1, gives you the background on what appears to be the defensive shootings that will be discussed in Part 2.  There have been varying accounts in the media as to what happened.  Wisconsin Attorney General Josh Kaul, who leads the state Justice Department, said in a statement that the agency is trying to conduct an impartial investigation. The investigations will undoubtably add more details but the below is what we know, to date.

    Background on the 1st shooting on August 23rd

    The Kenosha News reported that a woman told police in May that Jacob Blake, 29, her ex-boyfriend, had come into her home and taken her car keys and vehicle. She also said he had touched her sexually without consent. Prosecutors charged Jacob Blake with third-degree sexual assault, trespassing and disorderly conduct in connection with domestic abuse.  An arrest warrant for Blake was issued on July 6th.

    Why were police called on August 23rd?

    A 911 call alerted police that Jacob Blake, 29, was at the home of his alleged victim. The Wisconsin Department of Justice notes the police were called to the neighborhood by a woman who requested assistance because “her boyfriend was present and was not supposed to be on the premises.”  Brendan Matthews, attorney for the Kenosha Professional Police Association said that the officers were dispatched there because of a complaint that Blake was attempting to steal the caller’s keys and vehicle.

    Ben Crump, the attorney for Blake’s family said that Blake was only trying to break up a domestic dispute and did nothing to provoke police.

    Were the police aware that he had an open warrant for his arrest?

    In a dispatch audio of the incident, a dispatcher can be heard saying, “Jacob Blake isn’t supposed to be there and he took the complainant’s keys and is refusing to give them back.”  Brendan Matthews said officers were aware that Blake had an open warrant for felony sexual assault before they arrived.  Therefore, according to the Kenosha Professional Police Association, the officers on the scene knew he had an open warrant for felony sexual assault.  The dispatch indicates the police knew Blake was violating a protection order. 

    What immediately preceded the shooting?

    statement from the Wisconsin Department of Justice notes that officers tried to arrest Blake.

    A second video, taken before the shooting, shows Blake engaged in a struggle with at least two Kenosha police officers on the passenger side of the gray SUV.  An officer appears to be trying to restrain Blake before he manages to get up and walks to the driver’s door, the clip shows.

    Police first used Tasers (twice) to try to apprehend him; the Wisconsin DOJ statement says the nonlethal weapon “was not successful at stopping Blake.” 

    Did Jacob Blake have a knife?

    Brendan Matthews said, “The officers first saw him holding the knife while they (Blake and the officers) were on the passenger side of the vehicle.”  The bystander who recorded the shooting, 22-year-old Raysean White, said he saw Blake scuffling with three officers and heard them yell, “Drop the knife! Drop the knife!” before gunfire erupted. He said he didn’t see a knife in Blake’s hands. State investigators have said only that officers found a knife on the drivers-side floor of the car.  The state Attorney General, Josh Kaul, has said that Blake noted that he had a knife in his possession when the shooting occurred.

    Ben Crump, the attorney for Blake’s family, said earlier this week, that witnesses didn't see him with a knife.


    Kenosha Police chief Daniel Miskinis said Blake is currently under arrest “for an outstanding warrant for third-degree sexual assault.” 

    More on the other Kenosha / Rittenhouse shootings to follow.

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