COVINGTON, Ky. (ChurchMilitant.com) - Covington Catholic High School canceled classes Tuesday after numerous threats of violence from leftist protesters.
Some students from the all-boys high school who were in Washington, D.C. for the March for Life were demonized by the mainstream media after a video clip surface which appeared to show them mocking a Native American elder.
But more complete video evidence later emerged which undermined this narrative, showing not only that the students were subject to insults by Black Hebrew Israelites, but also that the Native American approached and intimidated the students, not the other way around.
Despite this exoneration, Covington Catholic High School has yet to defend the reputation of its students. In an email to parents Monday night, the school's principal wrote, "The incident that took place at the March for Life in Washington, D.C. is being fully investigated by an independent third-party investigator. Based upon and following an investigation, we will be taking the appropriate action regarding this matter."
Though the school and diocese have yet to defend their students, President Donald Trump and other political leaders are siding with the pro-life high-schoolers.
In a tweet Monday evening, Trump said, "Looking like Nick Sandmann and Covington Catholic students were treated unfairly with early judgements [sic] proving out to be false — smeared by media."
Looking like Nick Sandman & Covington Catholic students were treated unfairly with early judgements proving out to be false - smeared by media. Not good, but making big comeback! “New footage shows that media was wrong about teen’s encounter with Native American” @TuckerCarlson— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 22, 2019
Trump went on to say in another Tweet, "Nick Sandmann and the students of Covington have become symbols of Fake News and how evil it can be."
Kentucky Republican Senator Rand Paul also stood by the Covington Catholic students, saying in a tweet, "The media wildly mischaracterized that video of Covington Catholic students."
It is not just American politicians standing with the high schoolers, either. Polish lawmaker Dominik Tarczyński tweeted out Sunday night, "Dear Covington Catholic students, I'd like to invite you to the Polish Parliament. After watching this video, I am now standing up for these wrongfully accused young men and all of you! You are very welcome to come and speak out what you believe in!"
Dear Covington Catholic students,— Dominik Tarczyński (@D_Tarczynski) January 21, 2019
I’d like to invite You to the Polish Parliament
After watching this video, I Am now standing up for these wrongfully accused young men and all of You!
You are very welcome to come and speak out what You believe in!
Native American activist Nathan Phillips walked up to a crowd of high schoolers from the March for Life, many of them from Covington Catholic High School, beating a drum. He got in the face of one of the boys — who would later identify himself as Nick Sandmann — and pounded the drum just a few inches from the boy's face.
One of the other Native American activists accompanying Phillips started arguing with the teens and cussing at them, saying, "Go back to Europe where you came from. This is not your land, you have been here two, three generations compared to us. We've been here a million f***ing years."
Two students from Covington Catholic released a video on YouTube on Monday in which they talk about how the false media narrative has affected them.
"Several media platforms blatantly lied ... regarding the controversy in D.C.," one of the boys says.
The other teenager in the video says, "There have been many threats against our lives, against our parents. Some of these threats include that we should all be locked in the school and we should be burned to the ground, the school should be bombed [and] school shooting threats."
"I myself wasn't even present," one of them says, "but I'm very vocal about defending my school and my peers; and I have been doxxed on three separate occasions."
The other young man confirmed that he, too, had been doxxed.
They point out that all this leftist vitriol comes from a short video clip that was misleading and taken out of context. The young men's video concludes, "Nobody did their research, and it's now showing."
A group of Native Americans protested outside the diocese of Covington's offices on Tuesday in what was being called a "peace gathering." One participant told reporters he was sick of lacking "basic human rights."
Many Catholics and conservatives are writing articles praising the Covington Catholic students for their bravery. They are also condemning the Catholic and pro-life leaders who were all so quick to condemn the young men without evidence.
Catholic writer Sohrab Ahmari had a piece called "Dear Covington boys: everyone failed you," in which he writes:
I wish I could offer a word of reassurance amid your troubles. But all I can say is that everyone failed you. The elite media failed its duty to truth and fairness. Your school failed you. Your diocese failed you. Your Church failed you, with some of the nation's most visible Catholics, lay and clerical, rushing to join the pile-on. America failed you.
Conservative pundit Sebastian Gorka stated in an article Tuesday, "Nicholas Sandmann is an inspiration."
Phil Lawler wrote in a piece for Catholic Culture that "the adults who should have protected and even applauded these students turned on them. Now some ... of these adults are explaining that when they issued their first statements, they didn't have all the facts. Of course they didn't! That's precisely the point. They were ready to condemn without waiting for the facts."