Dear White People: In The Comments Section

AP Photo/Jay LaPrete

Dear Angry White People in the Comments Section,

Did I think I was going to touch a nerve with my latest piece regarding the Rittenhouse Verdict? Sure.

To say that I am surprised would be an understatement. Aside from a very few flat-out racist comments, I was astounded to read so much misinformation and beliefs that could only be described as un-American. I found challenge after challenge for me to respond to the comments suggesting that if I don’t, I’m a coward. In the interest of transparency and a little bit of fun, let’s do this.

Let me start by being absolutely clear here, as I was in the first piece:

THE RITTENHOUSE VERDICT WAS CORRECT AND HAD NOTHING TO DO WITH RACE.

Over three-quarters of all the comments were in reference to evidence of Rittenhouse’s case, and seemed to be answering some alleged point not made in my piece, that Rittenhouse was somehow guilty. Rittenhouse was innocent, justified, and should never have faced charges in the first place. Aside from that, it was alleged that I was being a race-baiter and virtue signaler, that I was peddling “white-guilt” and other adorable terms more often reserved for progressive leftists, simply because I suggested a little something called “compassion.” Although I am just some lowly writer at RedState, it is clear from the comments that many would question the mission of Christ if he walked the Earth today. I mean, where do you think you’d find Christ? In the suburbs?

Why did I write it in the first place? Well, two reasons. First, as I said, I felt that though the “system” got it right with Rittenhouse, it often gets it wrong, and when it does it primarily affects young, poor, minority males. That isn’t suggesting that you, specific reader reading this, are racist or that you had anything to do with building the system that perpetuates this injustice. What I am suggesting is that the example of justice in the Rittenhouse case should motivate us to ensure that the same justice is available to everyone, everywhere, regardless of ethnicity or socioeconomic status.

The second is that I saw double standards abound in arguments comparing Rittenhouse to Andrew Coffee. (I will probably tackle that topic in a piece this week.)

Many thought I was making it about race when I was actually making it about compassion and more specifically, compassion for people we may not fully understand. Not once in the 1500+ words of that piece did I ever suggest that conservatives are the reason for the injustice, or suggest in any way that conservatives were racist for not understanding the issue. That’s what awareness is about. It is simply saying, “Uhh, hey guys…. look over here… there might be a problem.” To suggest that the systemic problems with the criminal justice system aren’t a problem is a very narrow view, and only demonstrates that the problems with the criminal justice system aren’t a problem… for you.

That doesn’t mean you, specific reader, or that conservatives as a whole, are racist. It is the system. It is Big Government. It is mandatory minimums and civil asset forfeiture and garbage public defender programs. It is our system, implemented by the likes of Joe Biden and Kamala Harris (and specifically those two) for the last half a century, that inherently victimizes minorities. The failures to the minority community come at the hands of the government, empowered primarily by Democrat policies, in Democrat cities, and Democrat states. The system is absolutely racist – and it’s not because of Republicans. And you want to know an amazing part of it? You can believe this without having to sign up for BLM’s mailing list or locking arms with Al Sharpton.

In my piece Sunday morning, you read stories of people who were going down for minor drug possession or who their ex-boyfriend was, and many of you believe those offenses are worthy of the death penalty. If that’s the base you’re starting from, go ahead and click the X in the upper right. There’s no reason to keep reading. You’ve unilaterally decided that the punishment for whatever the cops say is their rationale is, is death. The tired arguments of “if only they had cooperated,” or “but they had a criminal record,” DO NOT justify killing them.

Law Enforcement’s ability to kill should be reserved for one thing and one thing alone:  An immediate and direct threat to the lives of officers/deputies or the general public. Believing that any officer or officers should have the right to step beyond that to include “well, he wasn’t listening,” or “did you see this guy’s record,” is flat out un-American.  It’s a literal argument against due process, and I refuse to sit by and say nothing while blatant constitutional violations are occurring and “our side” sits back applauding.

It isn’t racism I am calling out. It is the worship at the altar of authoritarians stripping the rights from people simply because they lack the means to appropriately defend themselves.

What also bothers me is the use of white injustice or black justice as a means of suggesting that injustice doesn’t primarily target minorities.  Simply because the system got it wrong with Ashli Babbitt and “right” in the case of Andrew Coffee IV doesn’t mean that it gets it right all the time or even a majority of the time. Just because it failed with OJ doesn’t mean that it got it right with Casey Anthony. Admitting that there are problems does not require that you or any conservative accept an ounce of blame or the label of a racist in the process. All that is required is acknowledging it. Once we choose to acknowledge there is a problem we can begin to look for solutions that don’t require defunding police or eliminating bail or the mass release of prisoners. We aren’t the Left. We aren’t a bunch of absolutists. We love this country and the protections guaranteed in the Consitution.

Compassion, understanding, patience, and a mind willing to assess the facts are all that I ask. While I thought those were the characteristics of conservatives and especially Christians, many commenters thought those were dog-whistles for racists. They aren’t. They are pride in what I know we can be.

If asking for that makes me racist, or a bad writer, or any of the other 100 epithets thrown in my direction today, so be it.

(EDITOR’S NOTE: Scott’s original piece caused a firestorm in the comments, quite a few of which were absolutely racist in nature and were deleted. Racism has no place in our comments section, and personally attacking a contributor or wishing physical harm or violence upon someone will result in either a time-out or a ban. Those have been the rules since RedState’s inception. All of our contributors are happy to discuss the ideas in their pieces and yes, even accept your disagreement. The wonderful thing about not being a Leftist is having the ability to accept that other people can have a position we disagree with and still be conservative. But when your comment is, ‘People like you are the reason this country is messed up,’ or when your comment is based on something the author didn’t say but you simply inferred, there aren’t many options for conversation. It’s my hope that conversation on this piece can be actual respectful conversation between adults.)