Keep Up These Racial Disparities’: Protester Kicked Out Of Courtroom For Blasting Judge Who Freed Armed White Nationalist

By Michael Harriot

Authorities ush­ered a man out of a Vermont court­room after he bold­ly inter­rupt­ed court pro­ceed­ings to con­demn a judge for releas­ing an avowed white suprema­cist who keeps defy­ing court orders ban­ning him from buy­ing guns. On July 22, self-pro­claimed white nation­al­ist Max Misch plead­ed not guilty in a Bennington, Vt., Superior Court for vio­lat­ing the con­di­tions of his release on pre­vi­ous gun-pos­ses­sion charges, accord­ing to the Brattleboro Reformer. Sworn state­ments from Misch’s wife and a local gun store allege that Misch pur­chased a hand­gun for $350 on March 30, less than two months after a judge banned Misch from buy­ing firearms fol­low­ing Misch’s February arrest for pos­sess­ing ille­gal, large-capac­i­ty ammu­ni­tion devices.

My nephew was in jail a whole year, your hon­or,” Pratt con­tin­ued as Vermont state troop­ers escort him out of the court­room. “Keep up these racial dis­par­i­ties, guys…we’re watch­ing all of you!” “I was in there specif­i­cal­ly to find out what was going to hap­pen with this guy,” Pratt told The Root. “My nephew was held with­out any evi­dence, with­out any wit­ness­es, with­out any weapon for a whole year await­ing tri­al. Meanwhile, this guy is a known vio­lent per­son. My thing is, why can’t we get the same kind of treat­ment? “I’m into social jus­tice and I can see all of these dis­par­i­ties going on, but I want­ed to see it in the flesh,” explained Pratt. “If it was me or any­body else, they would have let us sit there, even if we didn’t have a vio­lent crime…espe­cial­ly if we kept vio­lat­ing court orders.”

Image result for white nationalist Max Misch

Frederick Bragdon, the pub­lic defend­er rep­re­sent­ing Misch, argued that the white nation­al­ist was not a flight risk because he liked the atten­tion, explain­ing: “I’m sure as long as the press keeps com­ing, he’ll also be here.” The 36-year-old Misch describes him­self as a “white nation­al­ist” and “the man who be rep­re­sent­ing dem white muh­fuck­az of Bennington,” and admit­ted to “trolling” for­mer Vermont State Rep. Ruqaiyah “Kiah” Morris, who decid­ed not to run for re-elec­tion in 2018, in part because of Misch’s online and in-per­son harass­ment. In a 10-page report, Vermont Attorney General T.J Donovan acknowl­edged that Misch’s harass­ment of Morris was “clear­ly racist and offen­sive,” but declined to pros­e­cute Misch “because of the free speech pro­tec­tions afford­ed under the First Amendment.” When Donavan held the press con­fer­ence with Morris to announce this deci­sion, Misch showed up……and harassed Kiah Morris.

Illustration for article titled 'Keep Up These Racial Disparities': Protester Kicked Out of Courtroom for Blasting Judge Who Freed Armed White Nationalist

Days after that press con­fer­ence, Vermont law enforce­ment offi­cers began inves­ti­gat­ing alle­ga­tions that Misch had trav­eled to near­by New Hampshire to pur­chase large-capac­i­ty gun mag­a­zines, which are banned in Vermont. A coali­tion of gun-rights orga­ni­za­tions is chal­leng­ing the ban, which is why the judge claims he freed Misch with no bail. However, the state has already denied Misch’s claim that his arrest vio­lat­ed his right to bear arms. Morris notes that Misch is a proud mem­ber of a local white suprema­cist group and has con­tin­ued his three-year cam­paign of harass­ment against her, despite a restrain­ing order against him. “This just reaf­firms that it’s not safe for me or my fam­i­ly,” Morris told The Root on Monday. “[It shows] that we aren’t grant­ed and afford­ed the same pro­tec­tions that oth­er peo­ple have and that the jus­tice sys­tem is deeply flawed.

Morris

He’s not going to feel any reper­cus­sions for any­thing that he did regard­ing me and my fam­i­ly, at all,” said Morris. “This has become an entire debate around guns and firearms. It has been deter­mined by the attor­ney general’s office that pur­su­ing jus­tice with regards to racial harass­ment, intim­i­da­tion and threats is not wor­thy of tak­ing to the Supreme Court and forc­ing them to re-exam­ine this. But firearms are. “One of those gets you elect­ed into office,” added Morris. “The oth­er one does not.”

This story originated at the root​.com.