Merry Christmas Comets! The end of the semester is finally upon us! We’ve loved sharing laughs and insightful opinions with you all, and we’ll be back to it after a short break in January. Christmas is a time for giving and generosity; and for college students, it’s a time to forget about classes and begin receiving questionable comments from family members at family gatherings. Some might say it’s not a good idea to talk about politics during family gatherings, but we here at AMP disagree. It’s our Christmas wish for young leftists to fight with their relatives and make their grandparents uncomfortable with their “communist rhetoric.” Never back down Comets, because if it’s one thing we know for sure–your relatives never will. One topic that may come up in a political discussion is the trial of Kyle Rittenhouse, also known as the Kenosha shooting trial. If you’re not familiar with the case, 17-year-old Kyle Rittenhouse crossed state lines with an AR-style rifle (longer than an average arm, to give you a visual) to attend a protest against the police shooting of Jacob Blake, where he shot and killed two people. Jacob Blake was a black man who was shot seven times in the back by police officers, in front of his children, outside his apartment complex. There was unrest happening in the city of Kenosha in protest of this murder, and so Rittenhouse decided to pick up his rifle and attend this protest. He was attending in response to the ‘violent’ Black Lives Matter protests and riots. It’s obvious Rittenhouse wanted to intimidate protestors who were upset about police murders of innocent black men. During his unwarranted vigilante efforts, Rittenhouse shot three protestors, killing two of them and injuring the third. In the trial, the entire defense was made up of self-defense claims stating Rittenhouse was in serious danger and had to use his gun to defend himself. The prosecution brought up that self-defense can not be used as a claim if you yourself put others in danger first. So for example, if you show up to a rally protesting a man’s death by gunfire and parade around with an AR-15 rifle, you shouldn’t get a claim to self-defense, because you’ve made yourself a clear threat to others. However the jury seemed to disagree, because Rittenhouse was acquitted on all charges. After murdering two people and injuring an additional person, he will not serve a day in prison. Rittenhouse has become something of a symbol to conservatives, specifically the ones who heavily support law enforcement in cases of a police shooting of a black man. They see him as a righteous man who showed up to defend America against those who dare to question it. Patriotism is very important to these individuals and as we’ve seen, it’s even more important than acknowledging wrongdoings. Needless to say, this not-guilty verdict upset a lot of individuals, but considering the nearly all-white jury, incompetent prosecution, and obviously biased judge, few were left surprised.