Rod Dreher

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The Catholic Bonfire At The Stake

After lying Nathan Phillips went after Catholic schoolboys, he and his crew reportedly then tried to invade holy mass at DC’s Catholic basilica

Good morning from Dublin. It is really interesting to observe US public controversies from outside the American bubble. I am startled by the massive controversy that has erupted over the Covington (KY) Catholic school boys and the Native American man, Nathan Phillips, in the aftermath of the March For Life. Several video clips of the confrontation between an elder of the Omaha tribe and a large group of Catholic high school boys wearing MAGA hats have gone viral. Here’s a news story about the video, summing up the basics of the controversy. 

A selected part of the clip shows boys jumping and hooting and acting in a somewhat intimidating way towards the older man, as if to mock him. Some people interpret the boy standing in front of the man, the kid with a rictus grin, as sneering at the old man. Others say that you can’t assume that was a sneer; maybe the kid just didn’t know what to do.

In any case, the Catholic school has apologized for its students’ action, and the mayor of their hometown has denounced them. The boys were in town for the March For Life. The video is being widely cited as an example of the Trumpification of Christianity, and connected to the Karen Pence school controversy as yet another example of why conservative Christianity is an evil that must be driven from the precincts of the decent.

It is possible that the Catholic boys were complete asses. My initial judgment was that they certainly were that. You don’t treat a peaceful elderly person like this. Even if they thought he was wrong, those boys owed him respect. Yes, the old man approached them, but they could and should have handled him with respect. They come off as bullies.

But then I watched more clips, showing the greater context of the incident. It is not as simple as it has been portrayed. Below is a more complete video account of what happened. In it, one of the Catholic boys is overheard asking, “Does anybody know what he’s doing? Does anybody know what’s going on here.”

And, in it, one of the Indians with Phillips shouts: “White people, go back to Europe. This is not your land.” He curses the students with f-bombs (video is NSFW). He goes on: “You’re being a white man about it. That’s all you know how to do.”

You didn’t see that in the news reporting, did you?

Then, at the 4:40 mark, members of an insane black radical cult called the Black Hebrews (I remember them from my DC days) starts ranting at the boys about whites and sodomy, and says that “your president is a homosexual.” He makes fun of Christian civilization, saying: “You give faggots rights!”

Watch it all here:

The online mob is starting to doxx those Catholic boys. One of them sent this to a local news channel (forgive my formatting problem; just read the text):

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307 Responses to The Catholic Bonfire At The Stake

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  1. Stefan says:

    VIDEO: Covington Catholic High students in blackface at past basketball game – NY Daily News

    https://www.nydailynews.com/news/national/ny-sports-covington-nathan-phillips-nick-sandmann-20190121-story.html

    Oh dear, there goes Rod’s knee-jerk apologia for white racists (“tuh boys”, which is pretty much the same rhetorical sleigh-of-hand as the one employed by Michelle Obama when she called on the world to “Bring back our girls”). This isn’t a left vs. right thing though. Both the left and the right accurately describe their opponents when they ascribe bad faith and evil motivations to them. The digital medium has foreclosed on whatever pretense arriving at stable, uninterested knowledge about the world once existed. The consequence of which is that we are all acting as useful idiots for the Old Ones.

  2. sjay says:

    Our American Indian family thought it was hilariously apt to call her a Pretendian, given she claimed ancestry she had none of, yet received government money for the pretense of being Native American, leaving that much less of their share for real Indians.

    Except none of that is true, is it?

  3. Irish99 says:

    This “[NFR: Because I watched the edited version of the video and believed what I saw. — RD] ”
    is NOT an answer.
    Why do we throw stones?
    Because we are sinful. Because we prefer to point to the speck in someone else’s eye than deal with the log in our own. Even if the children were guilty, there is zero reason for any holder of a twitter account to retweet and draw attention to their misdeeds. None.
    I’m glad you are giving those boys an apology. The best kind would be written in ink, physically signed and mailed to their school. If only your peers in other media outlest would do the same.

  4. Dan Lo Pan says:

    Age, gender, religion, and race aside, people in MAGA hats doing the tomahawk motion are not innocent.

  5. treehugger says:

    Two reflections:

    First, politics and prejudice aside, what on earth is “newsworthy” about this at all? The incident is just a confusing and chaotic dust up that transpired at a public monument with a storied history of hosting political expression of all stripes. What’s news about an interaction getting briefly charged. Plus, it appears in this case that some among the protestors obviously were trying to gin up an “incident” that would play well on camera and push a narrative. We’d be way better off to agree that nearly all deliberately-induced viral events make us all the worse for granting an iota of attention. Besides, everyone involved seems to have handled themselves with self-conscious restraint.

    The only remotely newsworthy thing here is the reaction — another sad example of how contemporary media culture robs our kids of their youth. The nation has taken a telescope to how several individuals comported themselves in a brief encounter. The boys finally seem to be getting some sympathy – but by treating this episode as legitimately newsworthy, even their tempered defenders tacitly repeat the unearned shame that has befallen them. There are very fine lines in kids’ group behavior (especially teen boys) between boisterous, rowdy, offensive, mean and shameful. Why is it our business to parse out where this particular behavior falls on that continuum? Every kid acts on the wrong side of those lines at some point, and few, if any, deserve public shaming.

    These are teens on a class trip away from home. Can we please be honest about how all of us — really, ALL OF US — behaved or would have behaved away from home with our friends and schoolmates, with all of the excitement that comes with visiting our nation’s Capitol? How they comported themselves for a few minutes on a class trip involving no cognizable injury to anyone may be a good teachable moment on the bus or back at school; making it a national conversation teaches boys that something about them is uniquely dangerous or bad; that their very being is harmful or wrong.

    Which gets to my second point. This debacle is exhibit A that Gillette-style virtue signaling is not merely harmless but emboldens the mob mentality of the moment. It feeds a sense righteous anger – anger that finds expression in shaming individuals without knowing them, based on perceptions of certain visible, innate traits. If “toxic masculinity” is a thing, it becomes moral to judge and shame a young boy simply because he exists. And worse, the shame is compounded for a boy who tries to defend himself or question the condemnation. His verdict is sealed, and to be accepted or validated, he must constantly apologize, he must constantly display his recognition that he deserves whatever blame, scorn or contempt is directed his way – and failing to display such contrition in all circumstances can be socially fatal.

    We’re talking about a 16-yr-old boy who stood there, silently, smiling. Flinching at drum beats in his face, without losing composure. Whatever we imagine was happening in his head – that is what was happening outwardly that we could see, and look at the fury that rose up around the mere visual. How quickly he’s smeared as toxic masculinity. Even once the broader context emerged – critics have defended their snap judgments and pronounced themselves justified in their disgust at the picture of a young boy’s face.

    That is, a young white boy from Kentucky, wearing a hat that celebrates our President and supporting a cause grounded in his traditional religious convictions. Because of that, there’s not a single thing this boy could have done that would have been acceptable, perhaps except to slink away. Because of that, he’s not allowed any presumption of good intentions or benefit of the doubt, no slack for being a kid. The judgment is inescapable. Trying to be understood is futile (he’s subsequently begged for the understanding that he was attempting to show calm neutrality — but people still believe they know better, and his critics still claim the right to “see in his face” nothing but the “hate” of white male privilege). Collectively we’ve taught this kid how quickly his fellows will rush to condemn him, heap scorn, surround him in the truly most toxic thing we induce in each other — inescapable shame for the crime of existing.

    And that’s the nub of it. The only repentance for being a white male is to adopt and embody the ideology of the shamers; to live in constant performance of apology and self-renunciation. Were he wearing a women’s march hat, or some other identity marker of the woke, he’d have been lauded for his maturity and composure – for his courage to hold his space in the face of “bullying.” These young folks learned this weekend to be afraid or ashamed because of who they are, that even the adults they trust will turn on them (e.g., their school and church), that the world will break them or exact a cost. Because they are white boys who dare to display cultural symbols of pride in our President and their traditional values.

  6. Andrea says:

    @Emily
    “ Are you aware that this pack of teenage boys blocked the path of the people marching with Nathan Phillips back to the Lincoln Memorial, where they intended to end the march with prayer?

    Why are these boys and their ignorance, profanity and aggression entitled precedence over a group who had the right to march in that public space on a day designated to recognize and celebrate Indigenous identities, and contributions to the national narrative?”

    It is ignorance to suggest that because you want to go somewhere others should automatically move aside for you.
    It is ignorance to suggest that the boys didn’t have a right to be there. If you had informed yourself, instead of just assuming guilt based on race, then you would have known the boys where asked to wait there and they where approached by Mr Phillips whose actions do not demonstrate those of reasonable person trying to get by. A reasonable person trying to get by does not walk up to someone and bang a drum in their face.
    The only profanity that is evidenced as being uttered are those acompanying Mr Phillips. A group who video recorded the incident from the outset, yet interestingly only released a minuscule amount of footage. Mr Phillips has also previously been involved in an de filmed altercations that have been called into question too.
    The only agression was directed t the school boys.

    You are evidently a wolf in sheeps clothing. You pretend to be justly defending the defenceless whilst maligning school boys in spite of the evidence that proves every one of your sentences a lie. Shame on you.

  7. sjay says:

    As I commented on the Washington Post page, ideally, the three groups involved would get together and talk it out honestly and everyone else would just STFU.

  8. Ken Zaretzke says:

    “The National Review article. “These kids were the equivalent of Christ spitting on the Cross.” My God. It is just *surreal* how much Respectable Conservatism fanatically loathes with a burning hatred declasse white people.”

    Especially if the white people are Southerners. Catholic schoolboys from Connecticut would have been given the benefit of the doubt in the beginning. Wasn’t the presumably always smirking William F. Buckley, Jr. once such a schoolboy, after all?

  9. John of Dorset says:

    One seeming falsehood that is still going around is that Phillips was trying to defuse the situation between the BIH and the kids. This seems unlikely. Surely you’d try that by getting between the groups. You wouldn’t get right in the middle of one group and beat your drum as hard as you can in peoples’ faces. That’s provocation, not pacification. I see little to redeem Phillip’s behaviour, either at the event or his serial lies and shifting story afterwards. It seems he and his followers tried to manufact an outrage here.

    Also, it seems Emily, John Savage, and a few others haven’t seen the videos. The kids weren’t in the way of the Indigenous march. Phillips and his fellows seem to have ended any formal march and to have gone out of their way to aggressively insert themselves into a group of school children.

    Jamie likewise clearly hasn’t been keeping up, as there seems to be no independent evidence of any build the wall chants.

    Finally, I agree with Ben Shapiro and others that even if the media’s original version of the events was correct, it was a big nothing. There was no violence, just, it seemed, mild disrespect to a native American elder. It wouldn’t have warranted a national news story, and these kids didn’t deserve to have their faces shown nationally, and certainly not to be harassed by Twitter trolls and vigilantes.

  10. John of Dorset says:

    By the way, I’d like to see proof Phillips was a Vietnam veteran. Given his serial lying, and the fact his apparent age (64) would make it very unlikely, though not impossible granted, he was sent to Vietnam, I’d like someone to look into that.

  11. John of Dorset says:

    Update: Phillips apparently claimed to be a US marine veteran. The last marines left Vietnam in 1971, except for a few in Saigon with the embassy. Phillips was born, according to the reporting, in 1955. This means he would have been 16 or younger at the time of going to Vietnam.

    Some people are suggesting he was a Vietnam era veteran, not a Vietnam veteran, but he has himself mentioned coming back from Vietnam.

  12. Sheldon says:

    This, it seems to me, is the fairest assessment of the matter – something not as one-sided as first reported but also not nearly as benign as many of the recent post-mortems:

    https://talkingpointsmemo.com/edblog/making-sense-of-the-phillips-sandman-viral-video

  13. Thaomas says:

    I think the media did an OK job first by including the Bishops very proper statement promising to investigate along with the image that did look like confrontation bu the student and later in providing the young man’s side of the story and the additional details about the confrontation with the third group.

  14. Ampersand III says:

    “And the parents of these young men need to threaten a defamation suit.”

    After the mother’s comments, they’d better hope that there aren’t any “black Muslims” on the jury…

  15. Mark VA says:

    Well, the boys got a taste of the propaganda machine on their “community based learning” trip. A necessary experience for young people these days, if they want to learn anything of value;

    It’s also a teachable moment:

    Their history and social science teachers should develop several lesson plans on propaganda (see Norman Davies “Europe” pp. 25-26 and 500-501 for its scholarly definition), and give the kids a real dose of “in depth learning”, not the usual sanitized and shallow high school crap;

    Anyway, that’s my opinion of the day.

  16. more anon says:

    Oh, and as a parent, something that really appals me about all this is the fact that the kids’ school and their Church—their Church!—so readily fed them to the lions (yes, imagery intended).

    Here we have it—the modern Church, so reluctant to comment on the misdeeds of leading clergy, so ready to pass judgement on young kids…

  17. RudyM says:

    @Emily,

    Why are these boys and their ignorance, profanity and aggression entitled precedence over a group who had the right to march in that public space on a day designated to recognize and celebrate Indigenous identities, and contributions to the national narrative?

    How about the (by that point) small Native American group making their intentions a bit clearer? Stopping, standing, and banging a drum in front of someone’s face doesn’t seem to me to be the equivalent of: “excuse me, we’d like to get through to the top of the steps.” It was already a three-ring circus with the Black Hebrew Israelites. Are these high school students supposed to be mind-readers? If Nathan Phillips had continued moving through the available open space which would take him up the steps, I would guess the Conginvton students would have gotten the idea and gotten out the way, but he didn’t even do that. He made it into a confrontation.

    It was an obvious provocation and anyone remotely street-wise should understand that. Try getting in somebody’s face in a large city, and see what kind of reaction you get. You’ll probably get a lot more than smirk.

  18. Andy says:

    The genius of this whole thing is that NO comment has been made about the nearly 650,000 people in attendance for the March For Life. The media has directed our attention elsewhere brilliantly.

  19. GaryH says:

    Matt in VA says:
    January 20, 2019 at 9:04 pm
    The National Review article. “These kids were the equivalent of Christ spitting on the Cross.” My God. It is just *surreal* how much Respectable Conservatism fanatically loathes with a burning hatred declasse white people.”

    Yes – and more. These kids are, for the most part, from solidly middle class families. The odds are extremely slim and none that even one of them has an arrest record. And yet they are utterly despised by the Left. They are hated for being white males who are identifiably conservative Christians who are not perceived to be begging the people who hate them not to hate them.

    They hated for religion first but also for race.

    The Left now is revving itself up for an American version of the Bolshevik revolution, and white male Christians are topping the list to be battered so peace can bring the perfection of equality.

  20. Just A Guy says:

    “[NFR: Because I watched the edited version of the video and believed what I saw. — RD]”

    Why? You have now spent YEARS writing over and over and over about Christians and Christianity being threatened and under siege. If I’m not mistaken, you occasionally mention even writing a book about it.

    Yet when the mainstream media presents you with snippets of video of Catholic teens at the March for Life, you accept that video WITHOUT ASKING A SINGLE QUESTION OR HAVING A SINGLE RESERVATION?

    Do you understand why you did that?

  21. Hosanna says:

    There is no better response to this situation than 2 Timothy 2:23-25: “Have nothing to do with foolish, ignorant controversies; you know that they breed quarrels. And the Lord’s servant must not be quarrelsome but kind to everyone, able to teach, patiently enduring evil, correcting his opponents with gentleness.”

  22. Well, guess what everybody? I’ve seen some definite rays of sanity emerging in discussion of this incident. There is actual daily news coverage of the fact that people jumped to conclusions but there seems to be more to it. There are people who, like our gracious host, initially joined in the condemnation, who are taking it back. There is a piece in the reviled Atlantic about “I failed the test.” Kind of incidentally, people of certifiably African descent in DC who are familiar with the Black Hebrews described them as “vile.”

    It has occured to me that those boys who had MAGA hats (well short of half) probably bought them that day in DC. Because all the tourist trinket wagons along the mall sell them. There are enough people who buy them as souvenirs to make it profitable to keep them in stock.

    Both groups of people got what they needed from the incident which was publicity for their causes, so its win-win as far as I can see it. Phillips for his native american causes, and the Covington people for the March for Life and MAGA causes.

    As a wise person pointed out in a different discussion on the same subject, each person in each of the three groups we’re talking about is a unique individual. Hard as it may be for some to comprehend, MAGA and March for Life are two distinct lines of advocacy.

    Our American Indian family thought it was hilariously apt to call her a Pretendian

    Elizabeth Warren didn’t pretend anything. She mentioned a small fraction of ancestry, which she probably has, as do at least half the present inhabitants of this continent. (For that matter, Afrikaners are 6-7 percent native African — there was an excellent movie about that called “Skin.”) Warren never claimed tribal membership — as the Eastern Cherokee pointed out in defending her.

  23. MM says:

    Contrast the left/press reaction to this edited video with their reaction to Daleiden’s undercover Planned Parenthood videos, which a federal judge in Texas just this past week concluded were unedited in their entirety, according ot a forensics expert.

    In that case, they hated the messenger, so the message had to be a lie, even though it wasn’t.

    In this case, they loved the messenger, so the message had to be true, even though it was a lie.

    Done!

  24. Elspeth says:

    The lesson for you here Rod, and it’s one I figured out a few years ago, is to NEVER react to a so-called factual new report in the first 24 hours after it goes viral. It is almost never what the media says it is. Almost never.

  25. Kurt Gayle says:

    “Rush to Judgment – Covington Students Smeared by Media”

    Tucker Carlson Tonight, Jan 21, 2019, 8:00 pm EST (1:21-20:56)

  26. The Accountant says:

    And yet, people will still defend the MSM. Nobody will have the balls to say “fake news,” because it’s more important that we appear to oppose Trump than it is to defend children from the mob.

    Spineless cowards cannot keep a republic.

  27. ludo says:

    Kid’s a saintly victim for lengthily staring down an addled old man (snark). Honestly, I don’t see how that interminable mindless rictus could gain him any sympathy among the thinking set. Not that I have much sympathy either for the potentially unbalanced Native American Vietnam vet. However, the adolescent was of sufficient age to treat the funny old Native American with the same pitiful courtesy he perhaps more likely might have shown towards an eccentric elder (for example, a indigent) of his own “race.”

  28. Patricia says:

    Rod –
    Your explanation and acknowledgement of your having misjudged this situation is welcome, but I would hope that people with the cultural influence you now have would approach a situation like this – hyped to Heaven by the Leftist media, social and otherwise – with MUCH more caution before tweeting your instant thoughts about it.
    Conservatives, including Catholic/Christian faithful, are on notice now – the Left is out to destroy us, our values, our freedoms. It will attempt it in ANY way it can, truth and the whole truth be damned. We’ve GOT to wake up to that reality. Since when is it necessary to IMMEDIATELY opine about a video or a story like this, long before examining its totality?

  29. Daniel (not Larrison) says:

    One of my pet peeves has been on display during this whole incident: the ease by which some people assign emotions to expressions based on brief pictures:

    *Is it an awkward smile or a sneer?

    *Are those clapping in rhythm to support or mock?

    And so on.

    Yet time and time again I see people confidently assign someone’s thoughts to their expressions. It’s like those political memes that supposedly show a steely-eyed Obama staring down Putin, as if this one picture completely captures all you need to know about their relationship.

    Before it became total click-bait, Cracked had a little article about this: http://www.cracked.com/blog/the-petty-misleading-photos-we-need-to-stop-sharing/

  30. Clement says:

    If this had been a group of schoolgirls (instead of boys) I think it would be easier to pick up on the fact that they were being BULLIED by adults. As long as the schoolkids were peaceably assembled, adults should be expected to leave kids alone, aka ignore them. If the kids were running amok, or doing something like, oh, waving a tambourine right in someone’s face, the first thing to do would be to politely but firmly ask the kid to stop the behavior. Failing in that, complaining to their chaperones would be reasonable. (There probably weren’t any “officers” around due to the shutdown?) These schoolkids were bullied by the adults, adults who supposedly were there to protest oppression. Hmmm.

  31. JMJR says:

    This is the classic Lucy holding the football for Charlie Brown. Socialist propaganda (i.e., mainstream media) along with activist groups scheme to create a situation where Christians, Conservatives, or Catholics are evil and everything that is wrong with the world.
    Strangely, Christian, Conservative, and Catholic commentators are just like the blockhead Charlie Brown, who just cannot resist going for the ball EVERYTIME! They know the socialists lie, that their “news” is propaganda, that they are lazy, uninformed, and that they purposefully misinterpret and edit events they report on to fit their ideology rather than reality. But the blockheads can’t resist the ball and they rely upon the propaganda and end up looking like fools lying on their backs.
    To all you Christian, Conservative, and Catholic commentators who fell for the ruse for the millionth time, take heart, Lucy is setting up the ball for you to try again!

  32. Theta Beta says:

    Here’s an interesting analysis of the reporting on this story over at Epsilon Theory:
    https://www.epsilontheory.com/schroedingers-staredown/
    Rusty Guinn uses their rather powerful AI tool from Quid to analyze the verbiage in news feeds to visualize connections between news accounts, and he shows how in one day the narratives split into distinct groups with the two opposite views of what happened.
    (The Quid tool’s day job is to try to detect investible sentiment changes in financial narratives.)

    Rusty and Ben Hunt are working their own sort-of secular BenOp to try to break free of the narratives imposed on us by our would-be masters by seeing the plays for what they are.
    And make some money on the edge given by this knowledge.

  33. Joe M says:

    Michael Green is weighing in on a situation about which he has zero first hand knowledge. He’s being a sanctimonious Hollywood pundit. If it was your kid in the crosshairs I doubt you’d be as mesmerized by his writing credits. Trying not to sound too “narrow.”

  34. Dale McNamee says:

    These Covington Catholic High school boys showed more maturity than the so-called “adults” that they dealt with in DC and the the so-called “mayor”and the so-called “Catholic leadership” in the Dicosese of Covington !

  35. RudyM says:

    I’ve watched so much video of this event now, my brain cells are dying.

    There are some brief moments in videos where you can see that when Nathan Phillips arrives, there is open space where he could have gone up the steps, had that been his main concern. He chose to go stand in front of the Covington students. The Black Hebrew Israelites’ commentary on their video at that point is as out of touch with reality as one might expect, claiming that Phillips had helped calm the spirits of the Covington students.

  36. RudyM says:

    My personal hero in all of this is the skateboarding reggaetonero. I am a lot cooler to reggaeton than I was a decade or more ago, but that dembow beat was a welcome comfort in the midst of so much chaos.

  37. John Spragge says:

    Quoting P. J. Dub:

    Please keep posting and don’t be brief. I enjoy your hypothetical and irrelevant scenarios.

    Ignorance of Indigenous culture and faith traditions obviously didn’t serve these young men well. If you find ignorance an acceptable state, as you have clearly indicated you do, how can you claim to know what is relevant? If you want me to answer you at more length, try posting an argument that takes more than three sentences to refute.

  38. Jonah R. says:

    Erdrick writes: “The other frustrating thing about this story is that it seems like the Black Hebrew Israelites were the instigators. They’re a truly vile cult and hate group, but the media just lets them skate by with barely mention.”

    I’m no fan of the Black Israelites and am not defending them, but have you ever been in their presence? They’re barely literate ex-cons who stand on D.C. streets shouting at passers-by. Their other main avenue for getting their ideas out into the world is crude videotapes broadcast on old cable access stations that nobody watches. They’re not rational or sane, they’re way beyond even the fringes of African-American life in D.C., and they’re powerless and foolish. If you tried to sue them for being stupid, you’d find they were intellectually judgment-proof.

    I’m not trying to let them off the hook. The role of the Black Israelites in this whole mess needs to be made clear for the sake of truth and accuracy. It’s just that at a time when the news media sees its primary goal as shaming the “wrong” people, the Black Israelites aren’t an interesting target to them, because they’re beyond shame.

  39. Demeter says:

    I think the most notable aspect of this recent media event was how the conservative organizations/media reacted. I wasn’t surprised at all by Twitter mobs attacking the young men. The mainstream media outlets massaging a narrative out of selected video cuts? That’s par for the course.

    But the number of so-called conservatives and conservative organizations who so quickly and slavishly accepted the media’s narrative? Very telling, and quite informative.

    Why, it’s almost as if those conservatives instinctively see themselves as subordinate to those left-wing narratives promulgated by the mainstream media and social media platforms.

    If you’re the least bit conservative and over the age of 25, you have no excuse to fall for this manufactured nonsense. If you fall for it more than once, it demonstrates your inability to recognize patterns. If you fall for it repeatedly, it’s a blatant signal that you are not to be trusted as your motives are opaque where they are not clearly monstrous.

    This time, quite a lot of so-called right-wing and conservative voices checked too many “I’m with stupid” boxes with their online outrage. It was noticed. Your post-hoc mea culpas don’t hold any water. The mostly likely explanation to why you were gulled is that you are gullible.

  40. Richard Parker says:

    “Why are you still giving these monsters the benefit of the doubt?”

    In situations like this the default position has to be that the MSM is lying.

  41. Richard Parker says:

    I no longer think that you can assume anything to be automatically true:

    Is Phillips really a native American?

    Is he really a veteran?

    Both might be true but you can’t assume it to be so.

  42. Fran Macadam says:

    Now Disney producer Jack Morrissey has weighed in, vicariously enjoying throwing the kids he so progressively despises into a wood chipper:

    https://www.reddit.com/r/The_Donald/comments/ai5yoh/hollywood_producer_wants_to_throw_the_maga_kids/

    Today’s Hollywood figures make Fatty Arbuckle look like a paragon of virtue.

  43. muad'dib says:

    linking them to loathsome political movements;

    No one linked them to a loathsome political movement, they did that to themselves.

    When I see anyone wearing a MAGA hat, I simply assume that I am looking at a racist a**hole and a would be fascist, basically a deplorable.

  44. muad'dib says:

    They’re a truly vile cult and hate group, but the media just lets them skate by with barely mention.

    Because they have NO political power at any level of government (how many elected representative do they have at the State or Local level? Zero as far as I know.), no economic power(Do they have access to millions of dollars? I seriously doubt it) and no large organized community actively backing them, not even passively backing them.

    All they have is the ability to scream and rant and in America that and $3.50 will get you a coffee at Starbucks.

  45. soliton says:

    The “old Native Man” is 64.

  46. Connecticut Farmer says:

    Can’t speak to this thing directly in as much as I’ve only seen the excerpts of the video and not the entire video itself (which is around an hour in length). That said, if Big Media is playing tricks again it wouldn’t surprise. Manipulating photographs, video and audio via selective editing is the oldest trick in the book. I mean, if I wasn’t there in person to see it for myself, how can I really know that what I’m seeing and/or hearing on the I-Net or television is an accurate depiction of what has occurred? In that respect, contributor MC is correct, except it isn’t the “video” lying—it’s the person or persons manipulating the video in such a way so as to advance an agenda.

    But, again, I didn’t see the whole video. And, more importantly, I wasn’t there.

  47. Kurt Gayle says:

    Thanks to Christine Johnson (Jan 20, 9:25 pm) for saying this concisely, supportively, and respectfully:

    “Oh, Rod, Rod, I love so much of what you post and write, but I gotta say your bias against Trump blinds you so often to what your beloved so-called intellectual sources like NYT are doing. It’s a massive propaganda effort that is relentless. Please, please make it your default to assume the worst of the msm instead of swallowing what they report. Really, past time for you to stop being so gullible. It is truly the enemedia. Again, love so much of what you do and write. But please–it’s war. I just cringe at some of your quick posts where you assume there is ANY truth to be found in the msm.”

  48. Zebulun says:

    The teens are guilty of MAGAing in public. For some, that is reason enough for them to suffer for eternity.

    I completely disagree with this sentiment, but I do get why it is the case. There are folks who equate a red MAGA hat with a white hood or swastika – wearing it immediately makes you an enemy that needs eradicating.

    I admit that my logic here is definitely victim blaming in light of the video evidence, but the adults in charge should have had a policy in place to keep the kids from wearing those hats. Probably would have prevented the entire incident from happening.

  49. kgasmart says:

    Both groups of people got what they needed from the incident which was publicity for their causes, so its win-win as far as I can see it. Phillips for his native american causes, and the Covington people for the March for Life and MAGA causes.

    This is actually an interesting point. The “moral” left got its two minutes of cleansing hate, got to experience that moral indignation which sends a chill down their collective leg, proving yet again that the MAGA crowd is utterly amoral – but they, the enlightened, are on the right side of history, heirs to the saints.

    The MAGA crowd got yet more validation that the media engages in “fake news” and will that the left, aided by the media, will do everything in their power to smear and destroy them. It’s absolute confirmation – again – that their opponents have no intention whatsoever to fight fair. And so it’s yet more validation for the right to shed its own gloves. You wanna do this? Let’s rock.

    And that is the path toward an American Spanish Civil War, I think: One side suffused with its own sense of righteousness and hatred for its amoral enemy; the other side filled with loathing at the obvious perfidy of its opponents.

    All we need are some well-placed gunshots. Stay tuned for those, because at this point they’re inevitable.

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