Nov 19, 2021


November 19, 2021

Contact: WisDems Press (press@wisdems.org)

WisDems Statement on the Rittenhouse Verdict


MADISON, Wis. — Today, the jury delivered a verdict in the Kyle Rittenhouse trial.

Democratic Party of Wisconsin Chair Ben Wikler released the following statement:

“Today’s verdict—searing, shocking, but painfully unsurprising—has sent a wave of heartbreak and grief through our state and country. If a Black person had done what Kyle Rittenhouse did, it almost goes without saying, they would be far more likely to have been killed by police that night than to be walking free today. This verdict, and the trial and other events that preceded it, are a gut-wrenching illustration of a society with two systems of justice, two ways lives are valued, two sets of rules. A year ago, the movement for Black lives sustained the biggest demonstrations on any topic in the history of our country. Today, far-right and white supremacist militias are cheering and lifting up a teenager—who killed two human beings and almost killed another—as a hero.

“This moment demands that we remake our systems to create a state and a world where none of these events could ever have happened. Where our justice system treats all equally, with both fairness and accountability; where everyone, no matter where they live or the color of their skin, has the safety and security that every human being deserves. Where Anthony Huber and Joseph Rosenbaum would still be alive, and Gaige Grosskreutz and Jacob Blake would be uninjured.

“We echo the call for peace and support for Kenosha, a community that has been through unthinkable tragedy. To Republican politicians who are trying to distract and divide Wisconsinites by politicizing a tragedy—the people of Kenosha deserve better.

“In this moment of tremendous tension and pain, we can reimagine what a safe future will look like. We can show up for each other, come together peacefully to help the community of Kenosha heal, and we can honor the victims and their families by calling for accountability, safety, and justice for all; by dismantling systems and cultures of white supremacy and violence; and by building a state where everyone, no exceptions, can thrive.”