A.H. Scott: Same As It Ever Was

Equal Treatment. Artwork by Thomcat23, Copyright 2021
Equal Treatment. Artwork by Thomcat23, Copyright 2021

Essay by A.H. Scott, Copyright 2021


Same As It Ever Was




The boy that didn’t cry

As he scurried over that state line 

The boy that didn’t cry 

Sitting in the dock with halted breaths, but no waterworks of proof

The boy that didn’t cry 

Some wanna raise him up as a heroic lad

Seeing the results of his instrument of annihilation ain’t so bad

The boy that didn’t cry

When out on bail he hangs out with crowd that is proud

He even wears his luck on his chest

Bold freedom his t-shirt declared

The boy that didn’t cry ain’t so rare

Do some awful shot and look like a loon

But, make sure when it’s time for your trial ya’ put on that disguise

Haircut, clean shave, and a proper suit

Makes one think he’s a preppie to boot

Boy in training with rifle in hand

What kind of boy will he be when he actually becomes a man? 


Appearance is what it’s all about; as going from assailant phase to position as a specific type of defendant crafts the narrative that always repeats itself. 

Here’s the play: just get that neat haircut, slide into a suit, be clean shaven, and perpetrate the persona of a fresh-faced collegian or an upstanding member of a citizens’ council. 

And, if you’re extra fortunate with the face of a deceptive air of a cherub you’ll be lauded as a fragile boy in need of coddling from the cold hands of the cruel system of justice. 

Dress Me Up As An Angel is the Kyle Rittenhouse way; because, I am just a baby boy that went to Kenosha with my bang-bang to play! 

Kyle Rittenhouse is just another example of the transformed culprit into a pseudo-victim for the “Cynical Persecution Syndrome”. For those who defend his actions, he is the poor little waif who should not be held to account for what he did. And yes, it is the reason why he is given that largesse of virtue and desire for granting him that second chance of having a clean slate that won’t ruin his future. 

Overarching both cases is the cornerstone of race. To those who say that race has nothing to do with Kenosha, because the three victims of Kyle Rittenhouse were not persons of color is not being honest with themselves. 

The police shooting of Jacob Blake, a black man who has been left paralyzed was the impetus of the protest by concerned citizens of all stripes over this police action that was caught on video.

Now, add into the mix of what was going on in this ever changing scene of festering emotion, was an armed resident from across the state border in Illinois. 

A young sprout’s choice of taking an AR-15 style rifle onto the streets of Kenosha, Wisconsin on August 25, 2020 placed him into the crux of socio-political reckoning which remains ongoing to this day. 

Okay, so is a 17 year old with his lightweight, semi automatic rifle strapped onto his back the gung-ho, wannabe gunslinger or the whimpering little boy who got into something over his head? 

For me, I’ll say it outright that he’s playing the double-game of him being Mr. Big and Bold Street Fighter and Mr. Fearful Boy when on that stand at his trial in November 2021. But, for the moment, I’ll focus on that night back in August of 2020. 

What could possibly go wrong when an armed teenager[1] with an instrument of provocation places himself in the middle of a protest? The answer of sorrow is of three locations, three victims and an AR-15. 

This was not just a single action taken by Kyle Rittenhouse, but a continuous calamity over a smattering of place and impunity. 

Kenosha’s 63rd Street and Sheridan Road was the first location and the first person who was killed by Kyle Rittenhouse was Joseph Rosenbaum[2]

From Kyle Rittenhouse’s charging indictment[3], the extent of the damage from his AR-15 to the first man he killed was as follows from the Milwaukee Medical Examiner’s Autopsy: 

“Dr. Kelley of the Milwaukee Medical Examiner’s Office conducted an autopsy on Joseph Rosenbaum had a gunshot wound to the right groin which fractured his pelvis, a gunshot wound to the back which perforated his right lung and liver, a gunshot wound to the left hand, a superficial gunshot wound to his lateral left thigh, and a graze gunshot wound to the right side of his forehead…”

Second location and second victim killed by Kyle Rittenhouse was Anthony H. Huber[4], who was also fatally shot. 

Also, from the charging indictment [3] of Kyle Rittenhouse was the autopsy which was performed upon second victim, Anthony Huber: 

“Dr. Kelley also conducted an autopsy on Anthony Huber. Dr. Kelley indicated that Huber had a gunshot wound to his chest that perforated his heart, aorta, pulmonary artery, and right lung.”

Lastly, the third victim and final location of Kyle Rittenhouse’s frenzy was Gaige Grosskreutz, whose right bicep[5] was obliterated by a blast from that chosen instrument of destruction. 

By the way, Kyle Rittenhouse was not immediately arrested on August 25th on the streets of Kenosha in the aftermath of his shooting three men. He made his way back over the border to his hometown of Antioch, Illinois; where he turned himself in on the next morning of August 26th.

Lucky he is to have the luxury of the ability to choose how and when and where he turned himself in on charges of first-degree intentional homicide. Let’s go on to the trial of Kyle Rittenhouse

During his testimony on the stand, young Mr. Kyle demonstrated his staggered physicality of tearlessness over how under distress he was in retelling the events of that night to the members of the jury seated there. 

After the jury found him NOT GUILTY, oh my, my – clutch his pearls as he became woozy and his knees kind of buckle for him to almost faint (on cue, hmm?) 

Although he may have that baby-face, Kyle Rittenhouse is not just some wayward will-o-the-wisp that has been blown by a rightward wind. Bluntly put, this teenager wades in the waters of nationalism.

But, no one should fret on this young man’s future – for he is how more aptly shall I put it – quite Proud of his self; as are his buddies and he has a drink with at a bar.

And, you know something, if a person who was out on bail can wear a t-shirt emblazed with Free As Fuck[6] on it, well, I guess someone who would critique that same person’s courtroom performance can comment about this being with Fake As Fuck to them. 

In the aftermath of Kyle Rittenhouse’s acquittal, the machinery of the right-wing has begun to unfold. Primarily, the Kenosha Killer Kid or Kenosha Killa’ Kyle is now the marquee folk-hero for the bombastic fecal tornado of the ultra-conservative, gun-drooling, incitement churning, fascistic, fellowship of intolerance crowd. 

Secondly, Kyle and his mom are on that conveyer belt of monetization of being able to make more than a few bucks off of such torridly, manufactured notoriety. But hey, I guess they’ve learned how to be sly as a certain woodland creature of three letters. 

In that case in a Kenosha courtroom, there seemed to be an added element that accompanied the legal proceedings in encompassing the overall atmospherics of a tone or a vibe. Speaking of tones, there is a kind which pinpoints the moment we are living in.  

Imagine if you will – you are seated on a judicial bench in a mid-western state and you happen to be presiding over a case which has varied chords of societal implications to it. 

Of all the songs in the vastness of the land of ringtones, you choose one which is given reverence as being glorious and grand or grating and gnarly. 

I wonder how up in arms people would have been if a judge were on the bench and his ringtone was NWA’s  unforgettable and unflinching tune, “F*** the Police!” 

Anyone with two brain cells to rub together would bellow that this world would go bat- crap crazy at hearing a judicial arbiter in a robe of black having that as their ringtone. 

But, hey, all is fair in courtrooms and ringtones, right? 

Alas, the judge in the Rittenhouse case could have turned off his ringtone before coming onto the bench. Yet, it is what it is. 

Now, of course there is such a thing as having your ringtone muted, for you are broadcast live around the globe for everyone to see and hear. Yet, you choose to have the ringtone fully operational and into the unspoken breach of courtroom etiquette.

Timing is what timing is and hearing that ringtone[7] of Lee Greenwood’s song, “God Bless The U.S.A” may be a skewered exemplification of balanced fairness being off key. 

Ironically, or as I see it cosmically, that melody of Judge Bruce Schroeder’s ringtone is one which the defendant Kyle Rittenhouse knew well; for it was played at a Des Moines, Iowa rally the younger man[8] attended on January 30, 2020 for the former President of the United States, Donald J. Trump.

Life is a relative continuum of decisions; from the mind-bending to the innocuous. 

Same as it ever was. 

“We are not permitted to choose the frame of our destiny. But what we put into it is ours.” – Dag Hammarskjold

Events in Wisconsin and Georgia revolve around choices; be it overt or aligned in obliviousness. 

As for the second locale; there are a set of dual choices by a trio of men. Two of which were a father and son, who made the choice of draping themselves in a false cloak of layin’ down the law in a white pickup truck. As for the third man, he was in his own vehicle, giving backup support to the hunt. 

Man giving backup support behind that white truck looms large, for he is the one who filmed[9] the killing of Ahmaud Arbery.  

For the third man, his actions were in an odd way of being a lash more malicious and sadistic than the senior and junior. And, you may wonder why I would think that. Well, for me, it’s simple. First, he had to take out his cell phone, turn it on, focus it and press record. Now, that is not some reflex action or something which occurs just in the moment. Oh no, this was a purposeful act. And, to go a step further into the cavern of callousness, he wasn’t ashamed of what he recorded; to the extent that he kept the video of a man’s life being snuffed out on his cell phone like a perverse trophy he coveted. 

The father and son were Gregory and Travis McMichael. As for the man who filmed the death of Ahmaud Arbery, his name is William “Roddie” Bryan.

As for the McMichaels’ defense of them invoking their actions towards 25-year old Ahmaud Arbery as being a citizen’s arrest; well then it comes down to whom they considered to focus their scope of targeting upon.

To me, the non-inflammatory wording of the Georgia Citizen’s Arrest Law [10] is nothing more than a modern-day, thinly veiled fugitive slave-catcher’s coda. Pity for Ahmaud Arbery, that he was a free citizen in the state of Georgia that was tarred with the assumption of being considered a ‘nefarious Negro’, and not just a man out for a jog. 

In an odd turn of events over the video of the shooting of Ahmaud Arbery coming to public light; it was a lawyer who forwarded it to WGIG, a local radio station, who was among a cadre of persons trying to spin what really happened.

I guess those in the sphere of the three men who murdered Ahmaud Arbery was under some bizarre illusion that getting the video into the public bloodstream would make them out to be heroic men of action that were taking down a rambunctious robber in their neighborhood. They must have been kidding? But, this was another choice that was made.

His name was Alan Tucker and in a single quote, the obfuscation and shaping of the narrative of the death of Ahmaud Arbery came forth: 

“It wasn’t two men with a Confederate flag in the back of a truck going down the road and shooting a jogger in the back,” – Alan Tucker[11] 

That statement made by Mr. Tucker was inaccurate; for that Confederate flag was on the front of the truck that was following Ahmaud Arbery and the fatal gunshots[12] were to the upper left and lower middle chest of the 25-year old man. 

During the prosecution of the McMichaels and Bryan, the District Attorney’s office showed the body cam footage from one of the officers who interviewed the men at the scene of the crime. As  Gregory McMichael was telling his side of things to the uniformed officer, the body cam footage showed the front license plate on the white truck which the suspect was standing in front of. Bingo! There was the stars n’ bars for anyone to see. 

I have no doubt when Ahmaud Arbery was jogging along and saw that flag coming up on him, he wasn’t going to stop and chit-chat with the men that were in that white pickup truck. 

Mr. Arbery was running for his life and trying to avoid any contact with strangers with a Confederate Flag on their front bumper, coming closer and closer behind him. 

In all the coverage of trial of this case, its’ a mystery to me that there was scant analysis on that aspect of horror which was pulsating throughout Ahmaud’s being was when seeing that symbol and his reaction to it. 

Sadly, one of the last things which that man on a tranquil jog through that Brunswick neighborhood saw was an item of terror. He was alone, afraid and under attack by a pair of white strangers who assumed his guilt without evidence or reason. Ahmaud Arbery was looking for escape from the clutches of the three men and there wasn’t any way out for him. 

So, when those like the McMichaels, Bryan and their defenders talk about keeping property safe at any and all cost; my question to them is – why weren’t they as vigorously attentive towards any of the white lookie-loos who were walking in and around that open home site?

Kenosha has spoken and Brunswick waits in the wings of destiny. 

In Georgia and Wisconsin, that chip of arrogance for Kyle Rittenhouse, Gregory McMichael, Travis McMichael and William Bryan remains upon them without any need for lifting a finger. Without question, their position in American society is heralded and vaunted by shade and birth. 

Choose any action you wish, commit to an excuse of any form you wish, and maintain your game in the lane of cynical persecution. 

That’s the American Way! 

Same as it ever was.

Same as it ever was. 

A.H. Scott



1 – Antioch Teen Kyle Rittenhouse Appears In Court – ABC Chicago 


2 – Family Of Kenosha Shooting Victim – NBC



3 – Criminal Complaint Against Kyle Rittenhouse – CBS Chicago




4 – Criminal Complaint Against Kyle Rittenhouse – CBS Chicago 




5 – Gaige Grosskreutz Wounded – Chicago Sun-Times



6 – Kyle Rittenhouse Seen At Pub – Forbes


7 – Kyle Rittenhouse Trial Judge Phone Rang Lee Greenwood – Newsweek


8 – Kenosha Suspect Kyle Rittenhouse At Trump Rally – Buzzfeed 


9 – Video Shows Fatal Shooting of Ahmaud Arbery – TMZ

https://www.tmz.com/2020/0 5/05/shooting-video-unarmed-black-man-killed-ahmaud-arbery-georgia-jogging/

10 – The Ugly Past Of Georgia’s Citizens Arrest Law – AJC


11 – Ahmaud Arbery Video Lawyer – NY Times

12 – Autopsy: Ahmaud Arbery Was Shot Twice in the Chest – USA Today https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2020/05/12/ahmaud-arbery-video-shooting-autopsy-prosecutors-investigated/3114597001/)


About The Author: A.H. Scott is a poet based in New York City and senior contributor to Tony Ward Studio. To read additional articles by Ms. Scott, go here: https://tonyward.com/paint-me-with-your-lips/


A.H. Scott’s book: Bad Guys Finish Fast & Good Guys Finish Last is available on Amazon!


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