Today (November 19th), Kyle Rittenhouse was acquitted of first-degree intentional homicide and four other felony charges after killing two people and shooting another during Black Lives Matter protests that arose in Kenosha, Wisconsin last August after police shot and killed Jacob Blake. Following the verdict, actors, musicians, writers, and comedians responded on social media by expressing outrage but not surprise.
Actor George Takei had pointed words about the judicial system. “Justice denied is a body blow to our national psyche. On trial was not only a killer, but a system that continues to kill,” he wrote. “Today that system defeated true justice, once again. But mark these words: We will never stop fighting for what is right and just.”
Meanwhile, LeVar Burton got straight to the point. He exclaimed, “Tell me again there are not two kinds [of] justice in America!”
Filmmaker Ava DuVernay let the words of the parents of murder victim Anthony Huber do the talking, quoting them as saying the verdict “sends the unacceptable message that armed civilians can show up in any town, incite violence, and then use the danger they have created to justify shooting people in the street.”
Having crossed state lines from his Antioch, Illinois hometown, the then-17-year-old Rittenhouse was armed with an AR-15, with the alleged intention to protect a car dealership from being vandalized.
He was charged with five felonies: first-degree intentional homicide, first-degree reckless homicide, attempted first-degree intentional homicide, and two counts of first-degree recklessly endangering safety. His acquittal means he narrowly dodged a mandatory sentence of life in prison.
See reactions from other musicians, actors, and celebrities below.
John Huber and Karen Bloom, parents of murderer #KyleRittenhouse’s victim Anthony Huber: the verdict “sends the unacceptable message that armed civilians can show up in any town, incite violence, and then use the danger they have created to justify shooting people in the street.” pic.twitter.com/zhfMCIsXIk
— Ava DuVernay (@ava) November 19, 2021
Justice denied is a body blow to our national psyche. On trial was not only a killer, but a system that continues to kill.
Today that system defeated true justice, once again. But mark these words: We will never stop fighting for what is right and just.
— George Takei (@GeorgeTakei) November 19, 2021
Stay Home. Stay Safe.
— B.R.O.theR. ?uestion (@questlove) November 19, 2021
Tell me again there are not two kinds justice in America!
— LeVar Burton (@levarburton) November 19, 2021
Any Black person could’ve told you that. We’ve never been deceived by the evil bred in this country. It’s been happening for generations since its inception. This place was built on the promise of verdicts like #KyleRittenhouse’s. https://t.co/L4kIMUsFLU
— yvette nicole brown (@YNB) November 19, 2021
— ICE T (@FINALLEVEL) November 19, 2021
Elections matter. The lives of Joseph Rosenbaum & Anthony Huber mattered. They should be alive today. Our 1st amendment right to free speech should not cost any of us our lives. And regardless of anybody’s verdict anywhere and at anytime, Black Lives Do Matter. Today. & always ❤️ https://t.co/YNMVk8Wha5
— kerry washington (@kerrywashington) November 19, 2021
Disgusted. And what a dangerous precedent to set. (Or upkeep, really) They’re going to make him a cop aren’t they? https://t.co/Ns7qRgQ411 pic.twitter.com/dlHHijExPo
— Jameela Jamil 🌈 (@jameelajamil) November 19, 2021
Not this bitch found not guilty!!!!!!!!!!!
— City Girl. (@ThegirlJT) November 19, 2021
In other news you could see coming from a mile away… https://t.co/tR8M2cvdVS
— Daniel Dae Kim (@danieldaekim) November 19, 2021
wanna be a supreme court justice
wanna murder 2 people & not go to jail better
1) cut some onions
2) be white
(MUSIC CUE: “Cherry Pie”)
— Patton Oswalt (@pattonoswalt) November 19, 2021
#kylerittenhouse found not guilty tho we SAW HIM kill two. Fundamentally stupid, I predict he will go on to a big career on #Fox and in #RadicalRightWing circles, which counts as a plus with them. A tragic, tragic day for decent, THINKING, feeling, ethical people everywhere.
— bettemidler (@BetteMidler) November 19, 2021
Not guilty. Welcome to the Wild fuckin’ West.
The violence that is coming will be unprecedented. #godsaveusall
— matthew lillard —Will block. 0-F’s-given (@MatthewLillard) November 19, 2021
The miscarriage of justice today is enraging. This is white supremacy in action. This is hideous. He murdered people, bragged about it while throwing white power signs in a bar, and then manufactured tears to claim that despite his AR-15 HE was in danger. And he got off. Unreal. https://t.co/JnNsyQSLMu
— Sophia Bush (@SophiaBush) November 19, 2021
The verdict has shown that it remains legal to murder while white
— FINNEAS (@finneas) November 19, 2021
what the fuck what the fuck what the fuck https://t.co/lzgjSHLTVh
— The Regrettes (@regrettesband) November 19, 2021