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Kyle Rittenhouse mocked for trying to make ‘gay’ a slur on the first day of Pride Month

Kyle Rittenhouse gun rights activist court proceedings shooting three demonstrators killing two night unrest erupted police murder protest Kenosha Wisconsin
Sean Krajacic-Pool/Getty Images

The man who shot three people as a minor called Joe Biden, Kamala Harris, and David Hogg ‘gay’ and it didn’t go well.

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Kyle Rittenhouse, the acquitted killer turned gun rights activist and right-wing darling who fatally shot two people and injured another during the 2020 race-related civil unrest in Kenosha, Wisc., has come under fire for dusting off an outdated attack — calling someone “gay”— in an attempt to criticize PresidentJoe Biden, Vice PresidentKamala Harris, and gun control activist David Hogg.

In a post on Saturday, the first day ofPride Month, Rittenhouse took to X, formerlyTwitter, and wrote that President Joe Biden “is gay.”

When contacted for comment, Biden campaign spokesperson Kevin Munoz responded, “Happy Pride, Kyle,” Newsweekreports.

Rittenhouse escalated his controversial rhetoric on Sunday by responding to a photo posted by Hogg, which showed him and Harris discussing gun safety. Hogg had captioned the photo: “Thank you for your work on gun safety @KamalaHarris @VP.”

Rittenhouse’s reply was a single word: “Gay.” This post quickly sparked a wave of backlash on social media.

When approached for comment by Newsweek, Rittenhouse replied, “Newsweek is gay,” the publication reports.

Social media users condemned Rittenhouse’s remarks, calling them rude and immature. Critics accused Rittenhouse of trying to garner attention through divisive and offensive language. One user remarked, “When you have nothing of substance to say, you post things like this,” while another pointed out, “’You’re gay’ is a very lame insult in 2024. That being said, Kyle Rittenhouse is not in a position to insult anyone.”

Rittenhouse, 17 at the time, lived inIllinois when the Kenosha incident happened and traveled to the Wisconsin town during the aftermath of the police shooting of Jacob Blake, a Black man, which left Blake paralyzed. Using an AR-15-style assault rifle bought for him by a friend, Rittenhouse shot and killed Joseph Rosenbaum, 36, and Anthony Huber, 26, and injured Gaige Grosskreutz, then 26. Grosskreutz has since changed his name due to harassment he received after the trial. Rittenhouse claimed self-defense and was acquitted by a jury of all charges in November 2021.

Rittenhouse, now 21, has remained a polarizing figure since his acquittal.

Last month, Rittenhouse faced more criticism after saying a group of Native Americans should leave the United States in response to a viral photo showing three people raising their middle fingers at the Mount Rushmore National Memorial. Rittenhouse commented, “Then leave.”

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Christopher Wiggins

Christopher Wiggins is a senior national reporter for The Advocate. He has a rich career in storytelling and highlighting underrepresented voices. Growing up in a bilingual household in Germany, his German mother and U.S. Army father exposed him to diverse cultures early on, influencing his appreciation for varied perspectives and communication. His work in Washington, D.C., primarily covers the nexus of public policy, politics, law, and LGBTQ+ issues. Wiggins' reporting focuses on revealing lesser-known stories within the LGBTQ+ community. Key moments in his career include traveling with Vice President Kamala Harris and interviewing her in the West Wing about LGBTQ+ support. In addition to his national and political reporting, Wiggins represents The Advocate in the White House Press Pool and is a member of several professional journalistic organizations, including the White House Correspondents’ Association, Association of LGBTQ+ Journalists, and Society of Professional Journalists. His involvement in these groups highlights his commitment to ethical journalism and excellence in the field. Follow him on X/Twitter @CWNewser (https://twitter.com/CWNewser) and Threads @CWNewserDC (https://www.threads.net/@cwnewserdc).
Christopher Wiggins is a senior national reporter for The Advocate. He has a rich career in storytelling and highlighting underrepresented voices. Growing up in a bilingual household in Germany, his German mother and U.S. Army father exposed him to diverse cultures early on, influencing his appreciation for varied perspectives and communication. His work in Washington, D.C., primarily covers the nexus of public policy, politics, law, and LGBTQ+ issues. Wiggins' reporting focuses on revealing lesser-known stories within the LGBTQ+ community. Key moments in his career include traveling with Vice President Kamala Harris and interviewing her in the West Wing about LGBTQ+ support. In addition to his national and political reporting, Wiggins represents The Advocate in the White House Press Pool and is a member of several professional journalistic organizations, including the White House Correspondents’ Association, Association of LGBTQ+ Journalists, and Society of Professional Journalists. His involvement in these groups highlights his commitment to ethical journalism and excellence in the field. Follow him on X/Twitter @CWNewser (https://twitter.com/CWNewser) and Threads @CWNewserDC (https://www.threads.net/@cwnewserdc).