Waving the Bloody Shirt: Then and Now

According to Wikipedia, and what I learned in public school, the term "Waving the bloody shirt" is a pejorative phrase, used to deride opposing politicians who made emotional calls to avenge the blood of soldiers that died in the Civil War.
In other words, it's a metaphor for unhelpful, grievance politics.

Except that wasn't true.
The origin of the term was far different.

Representative, and former Union general, Benjamin Butler of Massachusetts, while making a speech on the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives in April 1871, allegedly held up a shirt stained with the blood of a Reconstruction Era carpetbagger who had been whipped by the Ku Klux Klan. While Butler did give a speech condemning the Klan, he never waved anyone's bloody shirt. White Southerners mocked Butler, using the fiction of him having "waved the bloody shirt", to dismiss Klan thuggery and other atrocities committed against freed slaves and Republicans.

And even this isn't exactly right. The "carpetbagger" in question was a school teacher who went to South Carolina to teach former black slaves how to read. For that he was whipped almost to death.

That is totally flipping the situation on it's head. Sort of like making the bully out to be the "real" victim in an assault.
But it does show that conservatives have always been good at flipping the script.

That got me thinking about Kyle Rittenhouse.
The right-wing likes to point out the "crossing state lines" and the backgrounds of the people who got shot. Or how the victims were all white, thus showing that Rittenhouse wasn't racist.
And it worked! Even some on the left have fallen for this.

No one talks about the fact that both of the men Rittenhouse murdered were unarmed.

Think about that for a moment. How has that fact been overlooked, or at least minimized?
One of the victims actually got shot in the back (something that every western movie I've seen will get you hanged).

Just imagine if an armed BLM protestor had murdered two unarmed, conservative counter-protestors.
Do you think the media would just ignore this fact?

Yet now Rittenhouse is some sort of victim-hero, according to Tucker Carlson.
Those who say otherwise are just waving bloody shirts.

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Comments

I'm merely talking about the political spin being used.

I like how this video shows that if Rittenhouse was shot and killed by a BLM protestor, that the BLM protestor could have plead self-defense and probably won, using the exact same law.

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9 users have voted.

Politicized stories always get weird. One of the people who were shot minutes before threatened to kill him and the other hit him with a two foot board with a pound of steel at each end. The third pointed a gun at him. Also he had been chased for a block, knocked down and was laying on his back.
Contrarily I discount the Tucker interview completely. He was obviously coached by a lawyer with a political agenda. The most likely scenario IMHO is that he was a 17 year old living out a byronic fantasy that went out of control - like it was all but certain to. He's clearly an idiot - he took a rifle to a protest - but he's not necessarily a right wing killer.

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8 users have voted.

On to Biden since 1973

@doh1304

One of the people who were shot minutes before threatened to kill him

Rittenhouse testified that he knew the guy wasn't armed. That he threw a plastic bag of clothes at him, that didn't hit him.

and the other hit him with a two foot board with a pound of steel at each end.

AKA a skateboard. If those are deadly weapons then I know a group of 6-year old kids that can be considered potential murderers.
And the guy who hit him probably thought that he was an active shooter, like most of the people who were chasing him at this point. (and he would be right)

Here's the thing: virtually everyone knows about your points. I wonder how many people are even aware that Rittenhouse's victims were unarmed?

The third pointed a gun at him.

This guy I won't defend. And he also didn't die.

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9 users have voted.

@gjohnsit gun in hand pointed up to the sky, along with the other hand up in the air, is not exactly sending a death threat.
I ran across a murder case in Texas that ruled the black pepper a parent poured down their kid's throat, which caused the kid's death, was assessed to be a deadly weapon.
Anything on your coffee table, dish, house plant, ash tray, can be found to be a deadly weapon. Including a skateboard.
A 17 yr. old kid with his convictions, and willingness to carry a military grade gun to a protest, is a propagandized little kid.
I hate the verdict, but it boils down to this: what was his motive to be there, heavily armed, when most kids his age are trying to find a girl for funsies on a Friday night?. And what does it mean for protests in the future? No matter how he innocently defended himself, he would not have taken a military grade weapon that he obtained through hoops, if he didn't think it would be handy.
Caveat: I read virtually nothing about this case until it was happening. I did not know BLM was involved.

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11 users have voted.

@on the cusp

what was his motive to be there, heavily armed, when most kids his age are trying to find a girl for funsies on a Friday night?. And what does it mean for protests in the future?

Unfortunately, it means a whole lot more right-wing people are going to declare themselves vigilantes, like Rittenhouse did, the next time there's a protest that they don't like.
And then some of them are going to do whatever they can to provoke the crowd so that they can get a chance to shoot into that crowd. It's so f*ckin obvious.

But hey, skateboards are deadly weapons, and someone did some looting, so it's no big deal.

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Pricknick's picture

@gjohnsit

AKA a skateboard. If those are deadly weapons then I know a group of 6-year old kids that can be considered potential murderers.

My choice of weapons will never be something another sees as a weapon.
I could force you to ride a skateboard, which may be manslaughter depending on your skills, or I can hit you with one which would be murder with no skill.
Your statement is one of the worst analogies I've ever read.

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6 users have voted.

Regardless of the path in life I chose, I realize it's always forward, never straight.

@Pricknick
If a skateboard is a deadly weapon then a spoon is a deadly weapon. Virtually anything is a deadly weapon, and thus the term deadly weapon is meaningless.
Which makes the idea that assault rifle being a deadly weapon, now equal to the danger of a skateboard.

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5 users have voted.

@gjohnsit
I am unfamiliar with Wisconsin law, but either he could not be also charged or the jury was not allowed to convict him of some version of manslaughter for carrying an AR-15 to a protest. He should not have walked, but it was probably the prosecutor's fault for overcharging rather than misconduct by the jury.
I had a similar argument argument over the Dan White trial. The "twinkie defense" was legitimate - his change in eating pattern showed mental deterioration. But he told a friend he was going to kill Moscone, took a pistol out of a drawer, loaded it with bullets from another drawer, drove across town, convinced a group of workmen to allow him to climb through a window (rather than go through a metal detector) and kill someone. He was clearly not "diminished." The jury was just plain wrong. Rittenhouse had no such obvious deviation from objective reality.
Rittenhouse was a 17 year old confronted by a clearly violent and unhinged adult. He ran, was chased and attacked. And as for your heated to the point of silliness 6 year old with a skateboard, I am 64 and have Parkinson's - but in my hands a skateboard is a deadly weapon. He f-ed up real bad, but not by pulling the trigger, it was was too late for that. It wasn't the jury's fault.

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6 users have voted.

On to Biden since 1973

@doh1304

And as for your heated to the point of silliness 6 year old with a skateboard, I am 64 and have Parkinson's - but in my hands a skateboard is a deadly weapon.

In that case I stand by my statement that if a skateboard is a deadly weapon, then an assault rifle is equal and no more deadly.

That I even have to debate this fact, of a skateboard being classified as a deadly weapon, and that all of the murder victims being unarmed is not a point worthy of consideration, leaves me with an unmistakable impression that a lot of people here have been subjected to propaganda.

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@doh1304

Contrarily I discount the Tucker interview completely. He was obviously coached by a lawyer with a political agenda.

He was most definitely coached for both his testimony and and the Tucker interview. A seventeen year old high school dropout that's into guns and not books could never have formed such thoughts and calmly delivered them. Having aced his first appearance by getting off on all charges, his legal team began going for round two, the defamation lawsuits against deep pockets. The makeover was good enough against a crap prosecutor, but wouldn't really stand a chance against a top dollar legal team for a deep pocket defense.

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snoopydawg's picture

No one talks about the fact that both of the men Rittenhouse murdered were unarmed.

Kyle didn’t shoot the 2nd guy until he pointed his gun at Kyle. He was definitely armed. He admitted that during the trial. Kyle pointed his gun at the guy who raised his hands and then he did point his gun at Kyle for some reason. It’s on video. Jimmy showed it if you’re interested.

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It is not until the tide goes out that you discover who has been swimming naked.

@snoopydawg you are thinking of the last guy

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snoopydawg's picture

@gjohnsit

The point stands. I got the detail wrong. You said none were armed. One was. Just what would you do if you were running away from a crowd of people and one attacked you by bashing you in the head with a skateboard? The point is Kyle didn’t just go up to people and shoot them. He tried running away from them. Let’s not forget that. I’m not defending him for being there or being armed, but he didn’t just murder people in cold blood either.

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3 users have voted.

It is not until the tide goes out that you discover who has been swimming naked.

@snoopydawg

You said none were armed.

I find it interesting that this simple point - that he killed unarmed people - is not worth even considering to almost everyone here.
That just blows my mind.

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@snoopydawg @snoopydawg he was running away? Or he was making a tactical withdrawal to better employ his standoff weapon?
His rifle was ranged.
I saw him not only making a tactical withdrawal I SAW HIM TURN AROUND AND SHOOT.
That's not running away.

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@Battle of Blair Mountain

he was running away? Or he was making a tactical withdrawal to better employ his standoff weapon?

It's not up to those in the presence of such a situation - a kid with an AR-15 running - to determine the intent of the kid. A couple of them had a split second to respond and possibly thwart what could have been a mass killer. Had the skateboard knocked out KR, there would have been one less death and one less shooting injury. While it's rare, some unarmed people have been able to disarm an active shooter -- we call them heroes.

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6 users have voted.

every video you see an armed kid Running Away from being assaulted or laying on his back, being assaulted.
With gunfire going off in the immediate vacinity. I think the fact that More people Were’nt shot shows more than a little shooting discipline.

Fucking psycho(documented) chases him across the lot Knowing the dude is Armed, maybe a sharp buttstroke would have sufficed.
Darwin Award instead.

Second dude tries a Bruce Lee while the kid is On the Ground and being charged from different directions. One and Done.

Third guy With a Gun backs off for a second and raises his hands, no shot. Dude Then lunges and points a hand gun at the kid and the kid fire one shot From the Hip to the shooting arm.

Like I said, pretty good shooting discipline.

And stop calling people smashing windows and setting fire to gas stations ‘Protesters’

You feel the need to destroy something, make it a symbol of your oppression, Not your local mom+pop or used car lot.

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4 users have voted.

Ya got to be a Spirit, cain't be no Ghost. . .

Explain Bldg #7. . .

If you’ve ever wondered whether you would have complied in 1930’s Germany,
Now you know. . .
Sign at protest march

@Tall Bald and Ugly
was a little bit quicker with his gun, if he hadn't hesitated at shooting another human being, then Rittenhouse would be dead. And that guy could have plead self-defense under the exact same law, and easily gotten off.

Does this also sound OK to you? That there should be no consequences for killing someone?

And as for "more than a little shooting discipline", the first guy he killed had a bullet in his back. You seem to be saying that shooting unarmed people in the back with an assault rifle is acceptable, because someone in the crowd did some looting.

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third guy had been quicker, shot the kid, and used the same defense for acquittal, I wouldn’t have an issue with it. @gjohnsit

For me it boils down to be stupid enough to chase an armed person while threatening them with bodily harm=getting shot.
Pretty simple.

As for ‘protesters’, No One got shot for burning, or looting, or anything else, except threatening an armed person with intent.

If you’re gonna be dumb, you better be tough.

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4 users have voted.

Ya got to be a Spirit, cain't be no Ghost. . .

Explain Bldg #7. . .

If you’ve ever wondered whether you would have complied in 1930’s Germany,
Now you know. . .
Sign at protest march

@Tall Bald and Ugly

third guy had been quicker, shot the kid, and used the same defense for acquittal, I wouldn’t have an issue with it.
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if you’re gonna slow pitch ‘em. . . @gjohnsit

There’s Good Reason you’re not understanding ‘my moral stance’,

I Ain’t Makiing One
I’m looking at what I hope to be ‘objective reality’. Being looked at from a subjective view doesn’t help. Throwing some arbitrary fucking ‘Morals’ into the mix adds an unnescesary amount of bullshit to wade through.
It’s akin to saying facts don’t matter but my feelings do. To that I say now and forever more Fuck You!
(the ephemeral you)

I mean, as a juror you’re supposed to look at the Facts! fuck the dumbshit, bruddah, the ‘moral code’ is supposed to be expressed in the law, the ‘people’ are supposed to look at the law and the facts on the ground and Not be influenced by political or local pressures to arrive at ‘justice’ based on those two criteria.
Watch the Orfala(sp?) video with as open a mind as you can, mon, then get back to me if you want.

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3 users have voted.

Ya got to be a Spirit, cain't be no Ghost. . .

Explain Bldg #7. . .

If you’ve ever wondered whether you would have complied in 1930’s Germany,
Now you know. . .
Sign at protest march

@gjohnsit
shot four times? That guy apparently had serious psychological issues -- and suicide by dumb Rambo teen can't be ruled out.

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5 users have voted.
snoopydawg's picture

if Kyle had been anything but white and how the jury would have decided the case.

But I think people listened to the wrong facts about that night and made up their minds about guilt or innocence from it. I’m still seeing people saying that he crossed state lines with his illegal gun and his age when it’s been debunked. And his mom didn’t have anything to do with him taking the gun to the protests. I’d call them riots because they certainly weren’t just protests when lots of buildings were set on fire. I don’t know why the first person was chasing him, but wonder what would have happened if he caught him. He seemed pretty angry from the videos I saw. Isn’t that what set the rest up? I’m just glad I will never have to sit on a jury and decide someone’s life.

The jury heard all the evidence and made their decision on his guilt. Not his innocence, just not his guilt.

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It is not until the tide goes out that you discover who has been swimming naked.

.

said that juries always acquit defendants they like and always convict defendants they don't like.

Drawing global conclusions from individual verdicts is not very useful in my opinion. It happens all the time of course -- I was a member of a Message Board that argued the "merits" of the Travon Martin case for over a year. I was amazed at how many people could ascertain the inner thought processes of the characters in that drama -- and argue with each other about what was "obvious" about what each guy was really up to.

Then, as now, the gist of the argument is that there are some erroneous tendencies loose in the world that lead to bad legal verdicts. Or something like that. I am sure there is a point to it all, but I don't know what it is.

Sorry to be a snarker on this but these are snarky times.

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I cried when I wrote this song. Sue me if I play too long.

The Liberal Moonbat's picture

...why is any story emphasized by the MSM never considered a "rabbithole"?

This seems like a...useless little crime drama; why should we care about THIS homicide case any more than any of the countless homicide trials that occur every year?

Why is this special? Why is this especially important?

How is this any different from the OJ trial (aside from the defendant's not previously being a celebrity)?

Julian...? Ghislaine...?

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In the Land of the Blind, the one-eyed man is declared insane when he speaks of colors.

To paraphrase Jodie Foster: Human is not something to aspire to, it's something to get away from.