Every politically-literate person in this country knew that the Trump movement would celebrate Rittenhouse as a hero, both as a person, but much more as a symbol. But few would have guessed the degree to which the MAGAs have already lionized Rittenhouse.
It shouldn’t be surprising. And yet those of us that live rather normal lives are rarely in a position to truly appreciate the Right’s radical extremism ahead of time. We knew the MAGAs would celebrate Rittenhouse to a disgusting degree. But, as often happens, their Rittenhouse lionization surpasses even what many of us anticipated.
As but one example, who would have predicted that Rittenhouse himself would become this symbolic to the Right? This comes from Don Trump Jr.:
Photoshopped image posted by Don Jr. of Trump giving out the medal of freedom to Rittenhouse.
This folks, is as sick as it comes.. pic.twitter.com/q1TnQirXo2
— David W Pippy (@DWPippy) November 22, 2021
The truly frightening thing is that the MAGA reaction to Rittenhouse leads one to believe that, had Trump and the MAGAs won in 2020, we would have seen this exact scene. It is that bad.
By this morning, Joe Scarborough had had enough. Transcript from Mediaite:
Yes, he was not guilty. The jury found him not guilty. The prosecution couldn’t prove its case. At the same time, this guy is no hero. The people on the far right, the fascist right, that are trying to turn him into a hero, they’re not doing the country a favor. They’re not doing whatever party they belong to a favor, and they’re not even doing Second Amendment rights a favor.
Scarborough is not perfect, nor even reliably correct in his analysis of issues, but on this one, he gets awfully close. Notice that Scarborough didn’t attack the actual verdict in the case? Nor will we. This site will rarely (if ever) criticize specific findings by specific juries. The jury swore an oath to render a decision on the evidence in front of it (not all the facts known) and the judge’s instructions. They didn’t have the luxury we had in rendering our verdict as a society.
Scarborough rightly attacks the system that set Rittenhouse free, the same system that the MAGAs are actually celebrating when canonizing Rittenhouse as the new MAGA super-hero saint. Kyle Rittenhouse pulled the trigger and killed two liberals protesting police brutality. Rittenhouse then got away with it on a flimsy claim, affirming to the MAGA-mind that the system retains some of its “proper” order. The Chauvin verdict might have been an outlier.
The hero-worship will continue because nearly every one of those AR 15-owning MAGAs dreams of being in Rittenhouse’s place at some point in their lives. Scarborough’s point encompasses the fact that the MAGA reaction to Rittenhouse makes it more likely one of them will put themselves in Rittenhouse’s place. They want the system in “their” country ready to protect them and their God-given right to rule over the left.
Scarborough says that they’re setting their own cause back and that is true, at least among society as a whole. But the cause has never been stronger among the MAGA-Fox community itself. Their cause has always been to ensure that everything and everyone is in their proper place.
And among the MAGA community and movement, the entire Rittenhouse story is self-validating. The MAGAs retain their place, on top, unchallenged, deadly, angry, entitled, smug, white, and victorious. Rittenhouse is simply the latest reaffirmation, hence the heroism.
Jason Miciak is a political writer, features writer, author, and attorney. He is originally from Canada but grew up in the Pacific Northwest as a dual Canadian-American citizen, which he grows increasingly thankful for every day. He now enjoys life as a single dad, writing from the beaches of the Gulf Coast, getting advice from his beloved daughter and teammate. He is very much the dreamy mystic that cannot add and loves dogs more than most people. He also likes studying cooking, theoretical physics, cosmology, and quantum mechanics. He likes pizza.
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