Thinking about Rittenhouse and Right Wing Murder Safaris | Talking Points Memo:
Over the years at TPM we’ve done a lot of coverage not only of the ‘gun rights’ movement but so-called ‘open carry’ activism specifically. These are those cases where men engage in a kind of wingnut performance art by going into restaurants or other public areas carrying various kinds of long guns, most often AR-15s, like the one Rittenhouse used. Many states have made this legal in recent years and these guys want to show they can do it. Open carry types have a whole story about why they do this. But it seems obviously part and parcel of what we now call Trumpism, a form of performative aggression and provocation. People who show up at a local Denny’s or a Walmart with an AR-15 strapped over their back are trying to menace and terrorize people. Because they can. Because it feels powerful.