Nicholas Rovinski is free, and we’re all supposed to feel good about ourselves as a result. Fox News reported that on Thursday, U.S. District Judge for Massachusetts William Young, “citing the coronavirus pandemic, ordered the release, of a Rhode Island man who was sentenced to 15 years in prison for participating in a plot to behead conservative blogger Pamela Geller on behalf of the Islamic State.” Young wrote: “The court concludes that there exist extraordinary and compelling circumstances that warrant granting this motion for compassionate release.” But where is the compassion for the person Rovinski would have brutally murdered and thanked Allah for the opportunity to do so?
Rovinski wasn’t supposed to get out of prison for eight more years, and even that was too soon, or should have been for someone who plotted murder over the exercise of the freedom of speech by an American citizen.
But there’s nothing to be concerned about, now, is there? According to Fox, “Young reduced Rovinski’s sentence to time served, and ordered him to spend the next 10 years in home confinement with electronic monitoring, with the first six months in ‘strict home confinement.’”
That’s hardly reassuring. Pamela Geller notes here: “The electronic monitoring is a joke, as is the home confinement. Last year a Muslim wearing an electronic tag killed a man in his deradicalization class and went out to wage jihad on the London Bridge.”
U.S. Attorney Andrew Lelling sounded a note of reason: “We disagree with the court’s decision to now nullify that sentence – after only five years – based on COVID concerns. We realize that Rovinski has certain medical issues, but this does not justify releasing to ‘home confinement’ – after serving a mere third of his sentence – someone who willfully conspired to kill people for ISIS.”
But that fell on deaf ears. This was eminently predictable, and I predicted it. As I wrote here last month, “Rovinski is lucky that he didn’t target some revered figure on the left. If he had, antifa would be storming the prison today, and The New York Times and CNN would be running features about how, given the proper circumstances, lynching really isn’t all that bad. But in our increasingly open and unapologetic two-tiered justice system today, all the poor boy did was plot to kill someone The New York Times and CNN hates. So what’s the big deal? The smart money is on young Rovinski, mask no doubt firmly in place (the pieties of our new national religion must be observed, after all), walking out of his prison for good considerably before this long, hot summer is over.”
William Young shows no sign of caring, but had Rovinski’s plans gone as he had intended, he would cheerfully have participated in a murder. What’s more, he was plotting to murder Pamela Geller for exercising her First Amendment right to the freedom of speech. For Young, plotting murder is apparently less important than murder plotters contracting coronavirus, and that the destruction of the freedom of speech and submission to Sharia is not that big a deal, and that when murder plots are directed at conservatives, they just aren’t all that serious.
Pamela Geller asks a pertinent question: “If Nicholas Rovinski participates in another plot to murder me, will Judge William Young be prosecuted?” Young’s ridiculous ruling demonstrates yet again that our justice system today heavily favors perpetrators over their victims and prospective victims, as we see with the wholesale freeing of prisoners supposedly because of the coronavirus pandemic. Many have speculated that the real goal of the mayors and governors who have freed dangerous criminals is to destroy the safety and security that most Americans enjoy, so as to pave the way for an authoritarian state.
And so there is another question here that is even more urgent than that of whether or not William Young will be prosecuted if Rovinski goes after Pamela Geller. He certainly won’t be. The real question is: would he even care? Given today’s polarized, hysterical public square and increasingly hate-filled Left, would he even be pleased?
Robert Spencer is the director of Jihad Watch and a Shillman Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center. He is author of 21 books, including the New York Times bestsellers The Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam (and the Crusades) and The Truth About Muhammad. His latest book is Rating America’s Presidents: An America-First Look at Who Is Best, Who Is Overrated, and Who Was An Absolute Disaster. Follow him on Twitter here. Like him on Facebook here.