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(Video: Fox News)
Fox News host Tucker Carlson is by no means sugar-coating the background of one of the men shot by Kyle Rittenhouse, then age 17, during civil unrest in Kenosha, Wisconsin, in August 2020.
“So Joseph Rosenbaum died as he had lived, trying to touch an unwilling minor,” the host of “Tucker Carlson Tonight” declared during an opening monologue on Wednesday evening’s episode.
Carlson was reacting to the day’s events during the trial of Rittenhouse on homicide charges, particularly his lawyers’ high-risk decision to put him on the witness stand. This is an unusual strategy in a criminal trial, particularly when the defense appears to be winning.
Moreover, his attorneys seldom objected despite argumentative, and some say abusive, cross-examination by the prosecutor. This included improper references to Rittenhouse previously exercising his Fifth Amendment rights against self-incrimination, which has raised the possibility, perhaps unlikely, of the presiding judge declaring a mistrial
At the outset of his editorial, Carlson claimed that “there was no remaining doubt that Kyle Rittenhouse acted in self-defense during the riots last summer in Kenosha. Every shot Rittenhouse fired was captured on videotape, and from multiple angles. Every single witness who testified this week at the trial confirmed exactly what happened.”
Kyle Rittenhouse has emotional breakdown on stand, judge forced to intervene and call for break https://t.co/mWDsyCcSRv
— Jack Furnari (@JackBPR) November 10, 2021
He then focused on Rittenhouse’s alleged attackers in an atmosphere that Carlson described as violent insanity in the aftermath of the police shooting of Jacob Blake.
“A convicted child rapist called Joseph Rosenbaum was released from a mental hospital, then went directly to join the mob that was burning downtown Kenosha. Once he got to the riot, Rosenbaum saw Kyle Rittenhouse and immediately threatened to kill him. Rosenbaum then chased Rittenhouse and tried to pull the gun from his hands. When he did that, Kyle Rittenhouse shot him,” Carlson asserted.
“So Joseph Rosenbaum died as he had lived, trying to touch an unwilling minor.”
According to conservative influencer Ian Miles Cheong, Rosenbaum “was convicted for raping five separate children ages 9 to 11 and spent over a decade in prison. While in prison he committed over 40 violations including assaults on staff.”
This is Joseph Rosenbaum, the first man shot and killed by Kyle Rittenhouse. He was convicted for raping five separate children ages 9 to 11 and spent over a decade in prison. While in prison he committed over 40 violations including assaults on staff. https://t.co/y5uQiOAsDX pic.twitter.com/mLfIX9g5cz
— Ian Miles Cheong @ stillgray.substack.com (@stillgray) November 11, 2021
“At this point, Rittenhouse ran to find police. A mob then chased him down the street, howling for his death. A rioter jumped on Rittenhouse and knocked him to the ground, another smashed him in the face with a skateboard. Yet another drew a loaded gun and pointed it in his face. Kyle Rittenhouse shot the second two men, one of them fatally,” Tucker recalled.
“So those are the facts, and there’s no way to interpret them, except for what they are: The exercise of self-defense. Kyle Rittenhouse shot people so he would not be killed,” Carlson insisted.
New York Post columnist Miranda Devine has also assessed Rosenbaum’s background:
“Rosenbaum, 36, was a pitiable figure who never should have been on the streets. He was a convicted pedophile with bipolar disorder who had just been released that day from a psychiatric ward in a Milwaukee hospital after a suicide attempt. He appeared deeply unwell, carrying a heavy chain in one hand, swearing, using the N-word and looking for trouble. He already had twice threatened to kill Rittenhouse and his group and ‘cut our hearts out,’ Kyle said.”
Devine maintains that authorities erred in bringing the case in the first place:
The narrative painted in the media is so at odds with evidence in court, it makes you wonder what agenda is at work here. Why does almost everyone who leans Democrat want to convict Rittenhouse and lock him in prison for the rest of his life?
He should never have been charged with murder. He was defending his life. The people who should be in the dock are the cowardly adults in charge of Kenosha who allowed the town to descend into anarchy on three shocking nights in which rioters conducted the familiar campaign of violence and arson that marked the period leading up to the presidential election.
Those riots across the country were orchestrated to terrorize communities and foment a sense of chaos under Donald Trump…
Twitter users reacted to Tucker “going there.” Here is just a sampling:
Tucker is fearless 💪
— Lantz Bell (@bellLantz1) November 11, 2021
Wow, don’t hold back!
— the Captal de Buch (@TheCaptal) November 11, 2021
Tucker. I may not always like you but damn what a roast.
— Dimitris T Antonatos (@tejadaantonatos) November 11, 2021
— Connecticut Mises Caucus (@MisesCaucusCT) November 11, 2021
— Nova (@AncientEngine) November 11, 2021
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