Wednesday on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe,” Princeton University professor and network contributor Eddie Glaude, Jr. said that the judge who decided the deceased should not be called victims during the trial of Kyle Rittenhouse shows the criminal justice system has bias.
Co-host Mika Brzezinski said, “The judge in the trial of Kyle Rittenhouse, the teenager who shot and killed two protesters last year in Kenosha, Wisconsin, during a protest against police brutality has ruled prosecutors cannot refer to the people he killed as victims. But the defense is allowed to call them arsonists or looters, or rioters. While laying the ground rules for the upcoming trial, Judge Bruce Schroeder said, ‘The word victim is a loaded word. And I think alleged victim is a cousin to it. Rittenhouse faces multiple felony charges of homicide and recklessly endangering the safety of others, among other charges. He has pleaded not guilty to all charges. The incident occurred after a white Kenosha police officer shot and injured a black man named Jacob Blake as he was attempting to enter his car. Blake, who had a warrant out for his arrest, survived but was paralyzed from the waist down. The shooting led to multiple nights of protests which turned destructive. Rittenhouse said he went to the demonstrations to help protect businesses from looters when he was attacked and that he acted in self-defense. The trial is scheduled to begin on Monday. Eddie Glaude, last time I checked, someone who is shot dead is a victim.”
Glaude said, “Well, last time I checked, too, that held. It seems to me, Mika, let’s do the thought experiment. Just imagine Rittenhouse as a young black teenager. Imagine the people who were shot and killed were white protesters. Would we have an issue with describing those who were killed as victims? I don’t think so.”
He added, “Here’s another example of the very ways in which the criminal justice system is at least perceived to be unfair, perceived to be biased in a certain sort of way. There is a presumption of innocence here that fits with our criminal justice process, but that’s not applied universally. Do the thought experiment. Imagine a black teenage kid walking through a protest with a rifle who kills two white folks. See what happens. that’s all we have to do.”
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