Concerning Kyle Rittenhouse: “Using guns for self-gratification undermines the 2nd Amendment”

BY Herschel Smith
2 years, 6 months ago

So says someone named Becky Bennett.

The Kyle Rittenhouse acquittal and the arrival of hunting season are making guns a topic around rural holiday tables.

I’ve written about how guns are a “normal,” even necessary part of everyday rural life. But gun owners need to think hard about our reaction to the debacle in Kenosha—in which Rittenhouse, a teenager with an AR-15, went looking for trouble and found it. Rural people who revere the Second Amendment, but feel joy, or improbably, vindication in the verdict, are in danger of undermining any legitimate place for guns in our society.

[ … ]

Because you never know, acquaintances often urge me to carry a gun while hiking. It’s why, during an office security check after the mass shooting at a newspaper in Maryland, one of my colleagues gestured meaningfully toward her purse and assured me she was prepared.

The problem with Rittenhouse was that he knew exactly what might happen because his behavior provoked the attacks he then defended himself from.

There’s a difference between reasonable defense and a parade. Parades are intended to impress spectators and to make the parader feel big. In the past, no one bragged about owning guns or flaunted them outside a shooting range. They bragged only about hunting prowess.

Rittenhouse loved a parade. If he wasn’t just feeding his ego—if he sincerely believed that waving an assault-style firearm in a chaotic situation improved security—then whoever taught him to behave this way with a gun damaged him immeasurably. No credible rural gun owner would teach children that guns are playthings or props (they teach constant awareness of a gun’s capacity for harm).

Unfortunately, in our presently unhinged society, allowing guns for responsible defense also opens the way for self-gratifying and provocative displays. Not to mention for exploiters like Gun Owners of America, which intends to “award” Rittenhouse an AR-15 like the one he killed with, as a thank-you “for being a warrior for gun owners and self-defense rights across the country!”

When pro-gun organizations and gun owners conflate self-defense and self-aggrandizement, they affirm the weak-minded and guarantee tragedy.

Rural residents, who claim to have their heads on straight about guns (unlike hand-wringing liberals), should know, and do, better. Anyone who cheers the Rittenhouse debacle betrays their rural values of respect for guns, responsible use, and responsibility for yourself and others.

They also risk undermining support for the Second Amendment. The National Rifle Association, untroubled by contradiction or nuance, quoted the amendment after the Rittenhouse verdict. Of course, “well-regulated militia” and “security” were the antithesis of the Kenosha debacle.

Rural gun owners used to take the Second Amendment seriously as the underpinning of responsible self-protection and the freedom that security brings. If we no longer believe these things, why should our urban counterparts support the right to bear arms?

Based on their focus on hunting and support for the NFA, GCA, bump stock ban, assault weapons ban, and universal background checks, this commentary sounds like it could have been written by the NRA.

Note her focus on rural America and hunting prowess.  Guns, for her, aren’t for personal defense in urban areas, nor for the amelioration of tyranny (the Raison d’être for the 2A).

Guns are to be hidden, not seen, and going outside the home with them invites combat.  Never mind that Kyle showed up begging people of both sides to come to his station for medical aid, and that when he was first attacked he ran and yelled “Friendly, friendly, friendly!”

Never mind that the rest of that fateful night as he suffered more attacks, he was running from the threat.  And never mind that this wasn’t a parade – it was known terrorists burning a city to the ground (Antifa / BLM).  Finally, never mind that at least one of his attackers tried to kill him by striking him in the back of the skull, and that at least one of his attackers pointed a gun at him.

To Becky, you invite combat by openly carrying a firearm.  This is the same argument the prosecution used.  And there is no basis for this in law, no basis in fact, and no basis in ethics for a position like this.

Where I live it’s legal to openly carry, as it should be.  No one even looks twice.  Open carry is far more comfortable than concealed carry, and it’s quicker to presentation.  It’s often what I choose to do, and it’s both legal and moral to do so.

Becky lives in another world, one where the police are legally obligated to protect her, one in which they can be there instantaneously, and one in which Antifa / BLM conducts “parades” rather than commits arson, vandalism, theft and rape (in Portland and Seattle).  This is a world of her imagination, for the police cannot be there instantaneously, and are under no obligation to protect her (see Castle Rock v. GonzalezWarren v. District of Columbia and DeShaney v. Winnebago County).

Moreover, the police are bound by the politics of the administration they serve.  “To Protect and Serve” is a meaningless political jingle.  The prosecutor in the Kyle Rittenhouse case wasn’t just going after Kyle.  He is a gun controller and was going after the 2A.  He was going after anyone who presumes the effect self defense.  His ultimate goal is for there to be no capability of defense of life and liberty.

How Becky feels about my open carry, or whether Kyle showed up with an AR-15 or an M1A1 Abrams tank, is really quite irrelevant.  The businesses of hard working men and women were burned to the ground that fateful night, and many people were injured outside of what happen with Kyle.  The police were told to stand down, as they have been on multiple occasions throughout the U.S. over the last year.

Becky wants a return to the days of yesteryear where men in flannel discuss the latest deer hunt and seldom carry outside the home.  Alas, it will not happen.  There are no “parades” any more.  There is looting and burning and destruction.  But good men are armed, and there are problems on the horizon.

Those problems aren’t a function of what sorts of conversations occurred over Thanksgiving dinner five decades ago.  Those problems are a function of the rejection of God’s law for society.

Becky would do better to turn her attention elsewhere for solutions than whether we celebrate Kyle’s exoneration of charges that should never have been brought to begin with.

Finally, it’s surprising that so many people have turned their attention to making out criminal behavior by criminals (Rosenbaum was a convicted child anal rapist, Gaige Grosskreutz was a career criminal, etc.) to be a “parade.”  Maybe it shouldn’t be, but it’s as if there is no shame left.


  1. On November 28, 2021 at 11:34 pm, Tac Observer said:

    The Constitution – 2nd Amendment give you the right to defend your life and liberty. It is actually unequivocal. Because it is Federalism, No state can revoke it.

    Now by “Life” I mean you can defend Life, Property and personal liberty against any direct threat. If the Government directly threatens the Liberty of the people.. You are Sovereign and the Government is by the people and dually elected so this tyranny would be a direct affront to liberty and can be defended against by force.

    No where was the Second Amendment ever construed as a tool of offense. Only defense.

    The 14th Amendment says you are first a CITIZEN of the US, and then a RESIDENT of a state, so again, Federalism overrules state lines. Your right goes with you and the 14th Amendment is clear that no state can move to block any rights.

    So taking any firearm across a state line is actually Constitutional and any law to the contrary, and those laws do exist, (unfortunately) is UnConstitutional.

    So as you move about the country that you are a citizen of, your Right to bear arms follows you everywhere, and you cannot bear arms without firearms and ammunition… so…

    Please, everyone consider learning what is in your Constitution. Now more than ever. All six things enumerated in the First Amendment alone have been Violate egregiously since Covid and before. The UnConstitutional Administrative State has been pulling the rug from under us for years.

    There can be no ruse when we the people, in unison, know the truth of our Constitution. Our Rights, and what the Limited Powers of the Government actually are. This is how we unite to fight. The Government cannot stand against a united people. Let’s learn our Constitution and enforce it. It’s Liberty or Subjugation, Right now.

  2. On November 29, 2021 at 1:00 am, LatigoMorgan said:

    Well, Becky, the purpose of the Second Amendment isn’t so we can defend ourselves if the deer rise up in rebellion.

  3. On November 29, 2021 at 6:31 am, Bill Buppert said:

    “The Constitution – 2nd Amendment give you the right to defend your life and liberty.”

    No, it doesn’t; it simply says out loud what I already possess as a human being.

  4. On November 29, 2021 at 7:42 am, Nosmo said:

    Mr. Buppert beat me to it – the U.S. Constitution does not grant rights to the citizenry, it affirms the pre-existence of those rights which come from a Higher Power than government and establishes that government is both powerless to contest such granting and legally prevented from doing so.

    Which has, for the greatest part, been regarded in the breach.

    I’m not going to re-hash countless previous arguments on the topic, but I would like to refer to one simple concept: What, exactly, is it that as a citizen, I own? If distilled to its most fundamental component, it is “life” then what ownership rights to I have to “life”? How great are those ownership rights, and what, if any, are the limits to it? I am not guaranteed, by anyone, any organization or entity, income, success, happiness, or any of the other things humans upon which humans place value. There is even no guarantee that I shall be fed, clothed or comfortable; the Constitution affirms that I am entitled to pursue such things, not that I am granted them or even entitled to any part of them, hence the phrase “life, liberty and pursuit of happiness” rather than “shall have” them.

    If “life” is the foundational component then it stands to reason that I am bestowed with the right – an opportunity, really – to maintain that life, at least in its most basic form – hungry perhaps, naked maybe, alone, but alive and sentient, and from there free and able to build on that foundation (come to think of it, that’s the way all of humanity has started “life” throughout history, and we’re fully dependent upon family and friends for everything from that moment of first breath).

    Continuing the thought, if it is affirmed that I am bestowed with the foundational right to “life,” even at its most basic foodless, clothesless and friendless state, then I am also bestowed with the right to protect it, even at its most basic state, or to some degree, have it protected for me (which is why we have “parents,” “family” and to some extent, “friends”).

    How that “life” is protected is wholly determined by me because I am the Owner, assuming ample maturity and learning to make reasonable decisions, until then it’s more of a “family-type” job (and, I recognize that “family” can be more than blood relation).

    Neither Ms. Becky, nor whatever government she prefers and/or supports, are entitled in any way to determine the “how” of my choice to protect my foundational right to “life.” Under the U.S. Constitution – which, again, affirms not grants – I am authorized any method of my choosing from running away and hiding to creating a large smoking crater which encompasses the threat to me. “Reasonableness” is neither defined nor required, although the rules established for civil societies (to which we have agreed by “living” here) may seek to place some limits on method, and apply consequences for “unreasonable” application of method or degree to which it is applied.

    Meaning, that as the Owner I may protect my “life” first and argue “suitability of method and application thereof” afterward. Ms. Becky, and her brethren, get no say in that.

  5. On November 29, 2021 at 8:39 am, Wes said:

    From her bio line at the end of the article:

    Email her at

  6. On November 29, 2021 at 8:53 am, Fred said:

    This article is a CIA/State Dept approved propaganda nudge piece. It’s got all the classic indicators of “shaping the narrative.”

    Becky, who purportedly speaks for “rural America” needs to be told by her man to shut up and go make scratch biscuits and gravy. Shameful.

  7. On November 29, 2021 at 8:56 am, blake said:

    Another, “I support the Second Amendment but” article.

    The hyenas at the riot did what they normally do: separated out what they thought was an easy target. They chose poorly.

    The author is a fool.

  8. On November 29, 2021 at 9:00 am, George 1 said:

    Becky is another gatekeeper for the fake right. Like Ben Shapiro and Glen Beck she would tell you what the acceptable response to any issue should be. They serve the interests of the left wing elites and no one on the right should listen to them.

    People like Becky and her gatekeeper ilk are just as bad if not worse than the outright leftists who she gives cover to.

  9. On November 29, 2021 at 11:58 am, billrla said:

    Fred: And not gluten-free, either.

  10. On November 29, 2021 at 1:42 pm, I R A Darth Aggie said:

    The Citizens of each State shall be entitled to all Privileges and Immunities of Citizens in the several States.

    Constitution, Article IV, section 2.

  11. On November 29, 2021 at 3:37 pm, Brad said:

    Well, Becky, “in which Rittenhouse, a teenager with an AR-15, went looking for trouble and found it.”. If your poorly thought out assumption here is wrong, we can disregard the rest of your drivel too. Correct. Looking for trouble and being prepared for it are two different things. People like Becky do a really good job of proving themselves irrelevant if you let them just keep talking. Oh and Becky, preserving ones life while an angry mob is trying to take it would feel gratifying. No matter what tool you used to accomplish saving your life.

  12. On November 29, 2021 at 6:01 pm, Randolph Scott said:

    Becky needs to stick to sucking fat ones and not bother herself nor others with her interpretation of the U.S. Constitution.

  13. On November 29, 2021 at 6:48 pm, Red Man said:

    Becky, Stupid is as stupid does. You be stupid.

  14. On November 29, 2021 at 9:18 pm, James said:

    The 2nd is a reaffirmation of birthright to defend ones self and to also arm the deer and have them join us in a rebellion against govt.tyranny.

    Sigh……,Lets Go Becky

  15. On November 30, 2021 at 2:59 am, Ohio Guy said:

    “Becky” is most likely an AI bot, programmed to spew nonsense. I thought the words it chose kind of odd. The programmers of this technology are going to have to try a bit harder to make these “statements” a little more realistic. That little rantrum was way out in left field. Just my two pennies.

  16. On December 1, 2021 at 8:24 am, Rick said:

    The 2A certainly can be interpreted as to support offensive actions. The very reason is when faced with tyranny, it is the right and the duty of The People to put down that tyranny. The Revolutionary War was not purely a defensive action.

    Though it has been already said in the comments, it cannot be too oft stated; the Constitution does not confer rights, it only protects rights which already exist, i.e., ‘natural’ rights, or God given.

    There are many problems with the article, too many to go into here. Suffice to say the entire article is to be ignored and thrown out. The author has identified herself as nothing less than dangerous to a free people.

RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URL

Leave a comment

You are currently reading "Concerning Kyle Rittenhouse: “Using guns for self-gratification undermines the 2nd Amendment”", entry #28796 on The Captain's Journal.

This article is filed under the category(s) Politics and was published November 28th, 2021 by Herschel Smith.

If you're interested in what else the The Captain's Journal has to say, you might try thumbing through the archives and visiting the main index, or; perhaps you would like to learn more about TCJ.

26th MEU (10)
Abu Muqawama (12)
ACOG (2)
ACOGs (1)
Afghan National Army (36)
Afghan National Police (17)
Afghanistan (704)
Afghanistan SOFA (4)
Agriculture in COIN (3)
AGW (1)
Air Force (40)
Air Power (10)
al Qaeda (83)
Ali al-Sistani (1)
America (22)
Ammunition (277)
Animals (292)
Ansar al Sunna (15)
Anthropology (3)
Antonin Scalia (1)
AR-15s (373)
Arghandab River Valley (1)
Arlington Cemetery (2)
Army (86)
Assassinations (2)
Assault Weapon Ban (29)
Australian Army (7)
Azerbaijan (4)
Backpacking (3)
Badr Organization (8)
Baitullah Mehsud (21)
Basra (17)
BATFE (221)
Battle of Bari Alai (2)
Battle of Wanat (18)
Battle Space Weight (3)
Bin Laden (7)
Blogroll (3)
Blogs (24)
Body Armor (23)
Books (3)
Border War (18)
Brady Campaign (1)
Britain (38)
British Army (35)
Camping (5)
Canada (17)
Castle Doctrine (1)
Caucasus (6)
Center For a New American Security (8)
Charity (3)
China (16)
Christmas (16)
CIA (30)
Civilian National Security Force (3)
Col. Gian Gentile (9)
Combat Outposts (3)
Combat Video (2)
Concerned Citizens (6)
Constabulary Actions (3)
Coolness Factor (3)
COP Keating (4)
Corruption in COIN (4)
Council on Foreign Relations (1)
Counterinsurgency (218)
DADT (2)
David Rohde (1)
Defense Contractors (2)
Department of Defense (210)
Department of Homeland Security (26)
Disaster Preparedness (5)
Distributed Operations (5)
Dogs (15)
Donald Trump (27)
Drone Campaign (4)
EFV (3)
Egypt (12)
El Salvador (1)
Embassy Security (1)
Enemy Spotters (1)
Expeditionary Warfare (17)
F-22 (2)
F-35 (1)
Fallujah (17)
Far East (3)
Fathers and Sons (2)
Favorite (1)
Fazlullah (3)
FBI (39)
Featured (189)
Federal Firearms Laws (18)
Financing the Taliban (2)
Firearms (1,777)
Football (1)
Force Projection (35)
Force Protection (4)
Force Transformation (1)
Foreign Policy (27)
Fukushima Reactor Accident (6)
Ganjgal (1)
Garmsir (1)
general (15)
General Amos (1)
General James Mattis (1)
General McChrystal (44)
General McKiernan (6)
General Rodriguez (3)
General Suleimani (9)
Georgia (19)
Google (1)
Gulbuddin Hekmatyar (1)
Gun Control (1,650)
Guns (2,317)
Guns In National Parks (3)
Haditha Roundup (10)
Haiti (2)
Haqqani Network (9)
Hate Mail (8)
Hekmatyar (1)
Heroism (5)
Hezbollah (12)
High Capacity Magazines (16)
High Value Targets (9)
Homecoming (1)
Homeland Security (3)
Horses (2)
Humor (72)
Hunting (34)
ICOS (1)
IEDs (7)
Immigration (108)
India (10)
Infantry (4)
Information Warfare (4)
Infrastructure (4)
Intelligence (23)
Intelligence Bulletin (6)
Iran (171)
Iraq (379)
Iraq SOFA (23)
Islamic Facism (64)
Islamists (98)
Israel (19)
Jaish al Mahdi (21)
Jalalabad (1)
Japan (3)
Jihadists (81)
John Nagl (5)
Joint Intelligence Centers (1)
JRTN (1)
Kabul (1)
Kajaki Dam (1)
Kamdesh (9)
Kandahar (12)
Karachi (7)
Kashmir (2)
Khost Province (1)
Khyber (11)
Knife Blogging (7)
Korea (4)
Korengal Valley (3)
Kunar Province (20)
Kurdistan (3)
Language in COIN (5)
Language in Statecraft (1)
Language Interpreters (2)
Lashkar-e-Taiba (2)
Law Enforcement (6)
Lawfare (14)
Leadership (6)
Lebanon (6)
Leon Panetta (2)
Let Them Fight (2)
Libya (14)
Lines of Effort (3)
Littoral Combat (8)
Logistics (50)
Long Guns (1)
Lt. Col. Allen West (2)
Marine Corps (280)
Marines in Bakwa (1)
Marines in Helmand (67)
Marjah (4)
Media (68)
Medical (146)
Memorial Day (6)
Mexican Cartels (41)
Mexico (61)
Michael Yon (6)
Micromanaging the Military (7)
Middle East (1)
Military Blogging (26)
Military Contractors (5)
Military Equipment (25)
Militia (9)
Mitt Romney (3)
Monetary Policy (1)
Moqtada al Sadr (2)
Mosul (4)
Mountains (25)
MRAPs (1)
Mullah Baradar (1)
Mullah Fazlullah (1)
Mullah Omar (3)
Musa Qala (4)
Music (25)
Muslim Brotherhood (6)
Nation Building (2)
National Internet IDs (1)
National Rifle Association (95)
NATO (15)
Navy (30)
Navy Corpsman (1)
NCOs (3)
News (1)
NGOs (3)
Nicholas Schmidle (2)
Now Zad (19)
NSA (3)
NSA James L. Jones (6)
Nuclear (62)
Nuristan (8)
Obama Administration (221)
Offshore Balancing (1)
Operation Alljah (7)
Operation Khanjar (14)
Ossetia (7)
Pakistan (165)
Paktya Province (1)
Palestine (5)
Patriotism (7)
Patrolling (1)
Pech River Valley (11)
Personal (73)
Petraeus (14)
Pictures (1)
Piracy (13)
Pistol (4)
Pizzagate (21)
Police (652)
Police in COIN (3)
Policy (15)
Politics (973)
Poppy (2)
PPEs (1)
Prisons in Counterinsurgency (12)
Project Gunrunner (20)
PRTs (1)
Qatar (1)
Quadrennial Defense Review (2)
Quds Force (13)
Quetta Shura (1)
RAND (3)
Recommended Reading (14)
Refueling Tanker (1)
Religion (493)
Religion and Insurgency (19)
Reuters (1)
Rick Perry (4)
Rifles (1)
Roads (4)
Rolling Stone (1)
Ron Paul (1)
ROTC (1)
Rules of Engagement (75)
Rumsfeld (1)
Russia (37)
Sabbatical (1)
Sangin (1)
Saqlawiyah (1)
Satellite Patrols (2)
Saudi Arabia (4)
Scenes from Iraq (1)
Second Amendment (673)
Second Amendment Quick Hits (2)
Secretary Gates (9)
Sharia Law (3)
Shura Ittehad-ul-Mujahiden (1)
SIIC (2)
Sirajuddin Haqqani (1)
Small Wars (72)
Snipers (9)
Sniveling Lackeys (2)
Soft Power (4)
Somalia (8)
Sons of Afghanistan (1)
Sons of Iraq (2)
Special Forces (28)
Squad Rushes (1)
State Department (23)
Statistics (1)
Sunni Insurgency (10)
Support to Infantry Ratio (1)
Supreme Court (56)
Survival (185)
SWAT Raids (57)
Syria (38)
Tactical Drills (38)
Tactical Gear (14)
Taliban (168)
Taliban Massing of Forces (4)
Tarmiyah (1)
TBI (1)
Technology (21)
Tehrik-i-Taliban (78)
Terrain in Combat (1)
Terrorism (96)
Thanksgiving (13)
The Anbar Narrative (23)
The Art of War (5)
The Fallen (1)
The Long War (20)
The Surge (3)
The Wounded (13)
Thomas Barnett (1)
Transnational Insurgencies (5)
Tribes (5)
TSA (25)
TSA Ineptitude (14)
TTPs (4)
U.S. Border Patrol (6)
U.S. Border Security (19)
U.S. Sovereignty (24)
UAVs (2)
UBL (4)
Ukraine (10)
Uncategorized (98)
Universal Background Check (3)
Unrestricted Warfare (4)
USS Iwo Jima (2)
USS San Antonio (1)
Uzbekistan (1)
V-22 Osprey (4)
Veterans (3)
Vietnam (1)
War & Warfare (413)
War & Warfare (41)
War Movies (4)
War Reporting (21)
Wardak Province (1)
Warriors (6)
Waziristan (1)
Weapons and Tactics (79)
West Point (1)
Winter Operations (1)
Women in Combat (21)
WTF? (1)
Yemen (1)

June 2024
May 2024
April 2024
March 2024
February 2024
January 2024
December 2023
November 2023
October 2023
September 2023
August 2023
July 2023
June 2023
May 2023
April 2023
March 2023
February 2023
January 2023
December 2022
November 2022
October 2022
September 2022
August 2022
July 2022
June 2022
May 2022
April 2022
March 2022
February 2022
January 2022
December 2021
November 2021
October 2021
September 2021
August 2021
July 2021
June 2021
May 2021
April 2021
March 2021
February 2021
January 2021
December 2020
November 2020
October 2020
September 2020
August 2020
July 2020
June 2020
May 2020
April 2020
March 2020
February 2020
January 2020
December 2019
November 2019
October 2019
September 2019
August 2019
July 2019
June 2019
May 2019
April 2019
March 2019
February 2019
January 2019
December 2018
November 2018
October 2018
September 2018
August 2018
July 2018
June 2018
May 2018
April 2018
March 2018
February 2018
January 2018
December 2017
November 2017
October 2017
September 2017
August 2017
July 2017
June 2017
May 2017
April 2017
March 2017
February 2017
January 2017
December 2016
November 2016
October 2016
September 2016
August 2016
July 2016
June 2016
May 2016
April 2016
March 2016
February 2016
January 2016
December 2015
November 2015
October 2015
September 2015
August 2015
July 2015
June 2015
May 2015
April 2015
March 2015
February 2015
January 2015
December 2014
November 2014
October 2014
September 2014
August 2014
July 2014
June 2014
May 2014
April 2014
March 2014
February 2014
January 2014
December 2013
November 2013
October 2013
September 2013
August 2013
July 2013
June 2013
May 2013
April 2013
March 2013
February 2013
January 2013
December 2012
November 2012
October 2012
September 2012
August 2012
July 2012
June 2012
May 2012
April 2012
March 2012
February 2012
January 2012
December 2011
November 2011
October 2011
September 2011
August 2011
July 2011
June 2011
May 2011
April 2011
March 2011
February 2011
January 2011
December 2010
November 2010
October 2010
September 2010
August 2010
July 2010
June 2010
May 2010
April 2010
March 2010
February 2010
January 2010
December 2009
November 2009
October 2009
September 2009
August 2009
July 2009
June 2009
May 2009
April 2009
March 2009
February 2009
January 2009
December 2008
November 2008
October 2008
September 2008
August 2008
July 2008
June 2008
May 2008
April 2008
March 2008
February 2008
January 2008
December 2007
November 2007
October 2007
September 2007
August 2007
July 2007
June 2007
May 2007
April 2007
March 2007
February 2007
January 2007
December 2006
November 2006
October 2006
September 2006
August 2006
July 2006
June 2006
May 2006

about · archives · contact · register

Copyright © 2006-2024 Captain's Journal. All rights reserved.