NBA Social Justice Coalition Blasts ‘Vigilantism’ After Rittenhouse Verdict

Kyle Rittenhouse enters the courtroom at the Kenosha County Courthouse on November 8, 2021 in Kenosha, Wisconsin. Rittenhouse is accused of shooting three demonstrators, killing two of them, during a night of unrest that erupted in Kenosha after a police officer shot Jacob Blake seven times in the back while …
Sean Krajacic-Pool/Getty Images

News of Kyle Rittenhouse’s innocence traveled far and wide Friday afternoon, but apparently, the part about him being innocent didn’t make it to the NBA’s Social Justice Coalition.

James Cadogan, the executive director of the NBA’s social justice arm, released a statement which was posted by the league’s official Twitter account, in which he extended his “thoughts” to those killed while attacking Rittenhouse last summer, defended the right to “peaceful protest,” and called all forms of “vigilantism” unacceptable.

Rittenhouse faced multiple charges, including murder, attempted murder, and reckless endangerment after several men assaulted him during rioting following the police shooting of James Blake in Kenosha, Wisconsin, last year.

As Breitbart reported:

That night, Rittenhouse and a group of armed volunteers were guarding a car dealership that had been torched the night before. After Rittenhouse put out a fire, he was chased by a rioter named James Rosenbaum, who reached for Rittenhouse’s AR-15-style rifle. Rittenhouse fired four times, hitting Rosenbaum and wounding him mortally.

A crowd then gave chase as Rittenhouse attempted to flee toward police officers. He was struck in the head with a rock by an unknown assailant and kicked in the face by someone referred to as ‘Jump Kick Man,’ whom Rittenhouse then shot at but missed. A rioter named Anthony Huber then hit Rittenhouse in the head and neck with a skateboard, and reached for the rifle; Rittenhouse fired one shot, killing him. Another rioter, Gaige Grosskreutz, who was armed with a pistol, raised his hands above his head, then charged Rittenhouse with his gun pointed at him. Rittenhouse fired, wounding Grosskreutz in the arm.

Of course, the riots in Kenosha were anything but a “peaceful protest.” Instead, business owners and citizens sustained millions of dollars in property damage as large sections of the city became consumed by flames and rampant looting.

Police officer stands guard in front of a department of corrections building after it was set ablaze during a second night of rioting on August 24,...

KENOSHA, WISCONSIN – AUGUST 24: A police officer stands guard in front of a department of corrections building after it was set ablaze during a second night of rioting on August 24, 2020 in Kenosha, Wisconsin. Rioting as well as clashes between police and protesters began Sunday night after a police officer shot Jacob Blake 7 times in the back in front of his three children. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)

The jury also clearly agreed with Rittenhouse’s attorneys that the 17-year-old acted in self-defense when he shot at his assailants. However, it could also be argued – persuasively – that it was those who were rioting and attacking Rittenhouse because they were upset that Jacob Blake got shot while resisting arrest, who were the real vigilantes.

Nonetheless, in addition to the NBA’s apparent commitment to getting the facts wrong and slandering an innocent teenager, those who cover the league appear committed to getting it wrong as well.

During Friday night’s broadcast of the Lakers-Celtics game, ESPN analyst Jalen Rose claimed that Jacob Blake – who is alive – was shot and killed by police officers.

Folks on Twitter had fun mocking the NBA’s announcement:

It’s almost as if the jocks at the NBA and ESPN should stick to sports or something.

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