The game changed for Turning PointUSA’s AmericaFest 2021 when it was announced that an appearance from Kyle Rittenhouse was confirmed. The GOP Times’ Matt Holloway was on the scene at the #AMFest2021 media row as Rittenhouse made his first appearance of the day with an interview by The Blaze’s Elijah Schaffer prior to his onstage appearance and captured images of the massive crowd that formed around their booth, choking off foot traffic through the Phoenix Convention Center. Throughout Rittenhouse’s interview with the conservative outlet, the audience cheered supportively and chanted “We Love Kyle”. Fox LA’s Elec Michaelson came to the same conclusion as Holloway when he tweeted that Rittenhouse received a “rock star reception”, even a hero’s welcome at the conservative event.
Following the interview with Schaeffer, Rittenhouse would join him, along with Human Events Daily’s Jack Posobiec, independent journalist Drew Hernandez and Turningpoint USA’s Charlie Kirk for an event on the main stage. But before that, Rittenhouse would be ushered through the thronging crowd in a scene that revealed the intense fame and adoration that the now 18-year-old young man is now the focus of. As cameras, journalists and fans pursued Kyle across media row and to the backstage entrance, his security team flanked him as they moved quickly. Unfortunately, as Schaeffer observed, there was a dark side to this as well, evidenced when independent journalist Elad Eliahu attempted to intercept Kyle by making an end-run around security, only to be physically held back by security and see his press pass revoked for his trouble. Eliahu was trespassed from the building and not allowed to return. Eliahu was asking Mr. Rittenhouse ‘why he supports BLM’.
Asked Kyle Rittenhouse why he supports BLM before Turning Point USA security wrapped me up and removed me from the conference pic.twitter.com/4FaC1PaIHz
— Elad Eliahu (@elaadeliahu) December 20, 2021
The Crowd Goes Wild With A Hero’s Welcome
A matter of minutes later, the event titled “Kenosha on Camera” would see the young man take the stage in a manner not unlike a professional wrestler or rock star, complete with pounding music and pyrotechnics. Michaelson described the scene, “Kyle Rittenhouse gets a rock star reception at the Turning Point USA even in AZ,” Michaelson wrote. “The teen was found not guilty of criminal charges after admitting to shooting & killing two people in WI. He says it was self-defense. He’s now seen as a hero by some activists on the right.” Check out the videos below and you decide.
Kyle Rittenhouse gets a rock star reception at the Turning Point USA event in AZ.
The teen was found not guilty of criminal charges after admitting to shooting & killing two people in WI. He says it was self defense.
He’a now seen as a hero by some activists on the right pic.twitter.com/fBvl2pKT6q
— Elex Michaelson (@Elex_Michaelson) December 21, 2021
Kyle Rittenhouse takes the stage at Amfest in Phoenix pic.twitter.com/BBG8JqiUex
— Jorge Ventura Media (@VenturaReport) December 20, 2021
Kyle Rittenhouse has just taken the stage at #AMFEST2021 and the crowd has ERUPTED in cheers!
— Courtney Holland ?? (@hollandcourtney) December 20, 2021
Having been there, these were not merely political “activists”, nor were they “far-right” as many leftists have posited, nor was Rittenhouse’s reception “Horrible” these were everyday people, high schoolers, college students, and ordinary folk of every walk standing for their faith, their freedoms and their nation. In the face of massive defamation and demonization of a young man who faced the unthinkable and was forced to defend himself with lethal force, these people have embraced him and supported him. Let’s just hope the attention doesn’t go to his head, and he stays humble.