The meme follows anti-police brutality protests throughout the nation after a Minneapolis cop’s decision to kneel on the neck of George Floyd for more than eight minutes. Floyd, a Black man, later died in police custody, and since his death, there have been countless other incidents of police violence. Jacob Blake, a 29-year-old Black father, was paralyzed when a white Kenosha cop repeatedly shot him in the back at point-blank range in front of his three children last Sunday. Kyle Rittenhouse, a 17-year-old vigilante, allegedly showed up at a protest for Blake with an assault rifle and used it to terrorize those protesters. Moore, apparently considering the terrorism honorable, told the Montgomery Advertiser he somehow wasn’t trying to encourage vigilantism. “I don’t think you encourage that,” he told the newspaper. “But I don’t think it should have come to this.”
Yael Eisenstat, a visiting fellow at Cornell Tech, said she tried to report Moore’s meme on Facebook but encountered an error message. “Seriously? He’s promoting violent acts against protesters & praising a murderer. Do your policies mean anything?” she asked.
Hey #Facebook: I tried to report #GOP Congressional candidate Barry Moore’s post for inciting violence & I got an error message that your reporting tool doesn’t work? Seriously? He’s promoting violent acts against protesters & praising a murderer. Do your policies mean anything? pic.twitter.com/snonl1ZmSE
— Yael Eisenstat (@YaelEisenstat) August 29, 2020
Phyllis Harvey-Hall, the Democratic nominee running against Moore in Alabama’s 2nd Congressional District, called Moore’s post “unacceptable” in a statement she released on Twitter Saturday. “One would think a lawmaker would know better than to defend extrajudicial killing,” she said. “This is not Christian conduct and Alabamians deserve better. There should not ever be a time where a lawmaker sees fit and feels comfortable promoting violence.
”As our nation grapples with ending systemic inequality, we need leaders committed to fairness, compassion, and working towards unity, not division.”
Moore, however, is far from the only conservative supporting Rittenhouse. College Republicans United, a Republican student group at Arizona State University, is donating money to Rittenhouse’s legal defense, The Associated Press reported. And President Donald Trump liked a tweet from political commentator Tim Pool describing the gun-totting teen as “a good example of why” he “decided to vote for Trump.”
Trump liked a tweet describing Kyle Rittenhouse, a supporter of his who is charged with murdering two protesters in Kenosha, as “a good example of why I decided to vote for Trump” pic.twitter.com/aqIACrwIb8
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) August 30, 2020
In a Twitter thread, Pool ranted:
“Violent extremists were destroying people’s lives for months, 30 people were killed
Democrats rejected Federal assistance every time Trump offered it
Media lied about Trump deploying ‘secret police’ (…)
Finally some kid from a nearby town, about 20 minutes drive, decides to go up and protect businesses and offer medical support o people, even the rioters
He was threatened and shot at”
Democrats have proven completely unable to do anything about it and we can’t even get a full throated condemnation from Biden or Kamala
Local Democrats have dont nothing and in some cases ordered cops to stand down
— Tim Pool (@Timcast) August 28, 2020
It’s interesting that the only deadly shooting resulting from recent protests in Kenosha was reportedly at the hands of a white vigilante and not the demonstrators the far right seems to be so dedicated to painting as violent.
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