SAN DIEGO—Councilmember Monica Montgomery Steppe had this to say about the not guilty verdicts in the Wisconsin court case of Kyle Rittenhouse that has captured national attention:
“The verdict in the Kyle Rittenhouse case isn’t just an injustice, it’s an outrage. But it’s also typical of the history of violence against Black bodies and Black movements.
“This all started because Kenosha Police shot Jacob Blake.
“Jacob Blake was denied justice. Then Rittenhouse used unrest as an excuse to shoot and kill Joseph Rosenbaum and Anthony Huber, and wound Gaige Grosskreutz.
“And there will be no accountability. There will be no justice for any of these victims.
“This is why I could not celebrate the verdict against Derek Chauvin when he was convicted of murdering George Floyd. Or the charges against one of the officers who killed Breonna Taylor in her sleep.
“Even as Black America breathes a sigh of relief in some cases, we have to steel ourselves against the inevitability of hundreds of others where the system will not uphold our humanity.
“Sometimes it’s the police. Sometimes it’s the prosecutor. Sometimes it’s a jury made up of everyone but our peers. In this case it’s the judge.
“Vigilante violence by white supremacists is nothing new. The only hope I can lean on in this moment is that increased attention in the age of social media will lead the public to demand systemic change.”