The trial of Kyle Rittenhouse, who faces homicide charges for his actions in three shootings in Kenosha, Wisconsin, on Aug. 25, 2020, during riots in the city, has been quite an event to observe. Rittenhouse has claimed from day one that he shot three men, killing two and wounding another, in self-defense. The state — as well as pro-rioting, anti-gun commentators, reporters, and activists — has claimed Rittenhouse went to Kenosha intending to kill people, which, in their reasoning, is the only reason he brought a rifle to the riots.
Over the last week, the courtroom proceedings have not gone the way Rittenhouse's critics had hoped. For example:
- The prosecution has seemingly imploded, with its own witnesses undermining their case.
- The presiding judge in this case ripped into the government's lawyers on multiple occasions.
- Rittenhouse took the stand in his own defense and refused to crack under cross-examination.
Now people across the U.S. have had a chance to see Rittenhouse, hear from him, and view the full evidence — evidence the liberal media did not bother to share with the public over the last 15 months.
Included in that group is billionaire businessman Bill Ackman — and he was more than happy to call out the media in a Twitter thread for failing to tell the whole Rittenhouse story and to blast them for biased reporting that is "destroying lives."
Instead of being the blood-thirsty gun-nut much of the media portrayed Rittenhouse to be, Ackman said he found the 18-year-old to be a "civic-minded patriot."
"Last night, Neri and I watched several hours of [Kyle Rittenhouse's] direct testimony and cross examination. We came away believing that #Kyle is telling the truth and that he acted in self defense," Ackman wrote, adding. "We found him to be a civic-minded patriot with a history of helping his community as an EMT and fireman in training, in his removing hate graffiti earlier that day from a local school, and ultimately in volunteering to protect a business during the night of August 25th in Kenosha."
He noted that his and his wife's "impressions of Kyle were materially different from those we had previously formed based on media reports and opinion pieces that we had consumed."
Turns out Ackman is not a big fan of agenda-driven media — especially when he expects news outlets to get stories right on difficult issues that he or the public might not fully understand.
"I have always been frustrated to read an inaccurate press report about a subject I know well, yet somehow I continue to believe other articles in the same newspaper about subjects I know less well," Ackman said. "Media and political bias are dividing our country and destroying lives."
"While we have not heard the entire trial, based on our assessment of Kyle on the stand, we believe that he will be found innocent by the jury," he added.
He followed that prediction with a warning and a suggestion for communities that might "react negatively and even violently after a jury verdict" that catches them by surprise based on biased media reports they've ingested: "I encourage you to watch the trial, or at a minimum his testimony and cross examination, before you form a view of his guilt or innocence."
Noting that he's not a gun owner or NRA member and is, in fact, a proponent of more stringent gun regulations, Ackman lamented that "society's view of #kyle's innocence depends more on one's views about gun control rather than on what actually took place last August."
And that's unacceptable, the businessman continued, because "Kyle Rittenhouse's life is at risk."
"Justice demands a fair trial," Ackman said. "Society would benefit greatly if politics did not enter the court room and convict innocent people."
As if to prove Ackman's own point, a reporter contacted him, he said, asking if his Twitter account had been "hacked."
Apparently, he said, "the reporter couldn't conceive of the idea that I could believe that Kyle is innocent because I am not a right winger. Crazy."