Covington Catholic High Apologizes for Students Who Mocked Native American Veteran During March for Life

Posted by ahbab
 Sunday, January 20, 2019 - 9:48:57 AM
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Disturbing videos emerged Saturday that appear to show Kentucky high school students mocking participants of the Indigenous Peoples March in Washington, D.C.—including a widely respected Native American elder who served in Vietnam. The videos went viral on social media and drew widespread condemnation—and, eventually, an apology from the all-boys school that sent the teens to the nation’s capital for the March for Life on Friday. “This behavior is opposed to the Church’s teachings on the dignity and respect of the human person,” Covington Catholic High School and the Diocese of Covington said in a joint statement. “The matter is being investigated and we will take appropriate action, up to and including expulsion.” The videos that sparked outrage show Covington Catholic High School students, some of them wearing “Make America Great Again” gear, surrounding a group of Native American marchers and shouting and jumping as marchers start playing music. One boy in a MAGA hat appears to stand just inches from the face of Omaha tribe elder Nathan Phillips, who is singing and playing the drum. Phillips smiles calmly at the teen and continues to play. “When I was there singing, I heard them saying, ‘build that wall! build that wall!’” Phillips said later in a video posted to Twitter. “This is indigenous land—not supposed to have walls here. We never [did] for a millennium.” “Before anybody else came here, you never had walls, you never had a prison,” he also said. “We always too care of our elders. We took care of our children.” Phillips, a Vietnam veteran and previous director of the Native Youth Alliance, is a “keeper of a sacred pipe” who leads an annual ceremony honoring Native American veterans in Arlington National Cemetery, according to Indian Country Today. Phillips said he wished the young men’s energy was used “to making this country really great.” Defenders of the teens on social media circulated a snippet that showed Phillips approaching the school group at one point—along with screenshots of text messages purported to be from the boys in which they claimed he was the interloper and they were only being enthusiastic. Marcus Frejo, a member of the Pawnee and Seminole tribes, told the Associated Press that he and Philips saw the students chanting “Make America great” and doing a mocking version of the haka, the traditional Maori dance, and decided to go over to defuse the situation, However the two groups crossed paths, the clip of the student wearing the MAGA hat and a smirk on his face, standing in front of and staring at Phillips, drew widespread criticism. New Mexico Democrat Deb Haaland, one of the first Native American women to serve in Congress, slammed the Covington students on Twitter. “This Veteran put his life on the line for our country,” she said. “The students’ display of blatant hate, disrespect, and intolerance is a signal of how common decency has decayed under this administration. Heartbreaking.” As the videos began to circulate, the diocese said it was investigating. But as the criticism mounted, with public officials and celebrities joining in, the church and school issued the apology. “We condemn the actions of the Covington Catholic High School students towards Nathan Phillips specifically, and Native Americans in general, Jan. 18, after the March for Life, in Washington, D.C. We extend our deepest apologies to Mr. Phillips,” it said. The March for Life, an anti-abortion rally, was held at the same time as the Indigenous Peoples March. In a statement posted to Twitter, March for Life President Jeanne Mancini distanced itself from the Covington contingent. “The pro-life movement at its core is a movement of love and the reprehensible behavior shown in the video in no way represents the 46 years and millions of people who have peacefully and respectfully gathered in Washington, DC, to stand up for the unborn,” she wrote. Covington Catholic also apologized to March for Life participants, saying, “We know this incident also has tainted the entire witness of the March for Life and express or most sincere apologies to all those attended the March and all those who support the pro-life movement.” On the Catholic Conference of Kentucky website, many Catholics called for the boys to be expelled. “As a practicing Catholic and parent, I can only pray that these children are expelled and the adult chaperones face severe consequences. This behavior brought me to tears,” a commenter named Julia Delgado wrote.

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Comments to Covington Catholic High Apologizes for Students Who Mocked Native American Veteran During March for Life

  • This report is factually untrue. you should watch the original footage and you’ll see that the boys were just standing there waiting for their bus and were approached by the Native American, Mr. Phillips. He was deliberately trying to provoke a response from them. Their response was not to mock him, but to sing their school song. One student, who was completely nonplussed did have an involuntary smirk on his face, for which he has apologized to Mr Phillips. Mr. Phillips also claimed to be a Vietnam Veteran, which was also incorrect. He did serve in the military as a refrigeration specialist and was released as a private, which indicates he got in trouble back then too and got busted back to private as punishment for something before being separated. That makes him a perennial trouble maker in my book, and you have the responsibility to fact check before posting lies and making yourself an irresponsible organ of the main stream media.

    Thomas Milley Sunday, January 20, 2019 - 9:48:57 AM 0  0

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