President Trump speaks out on situation involving a student accused of mocking a Native American
Video footage was released last week that showed students mocking a Native American army veteran. The main focus of the videos was a student wearing a MAGA hat who was seen staring down at the vet.
However, more clips have been released that revealed that the students were initially harassed by another group before the confrontation with the Native American. Now President Donald Trump has given his take on the matter.
Nick Sandmann is the junior from Covington Catholic High School who is in the forefront of the controversy. He was filmed smirking and smiling at Native American army veteran Nathan Phillips, 64.
Now the story has reached President Donald Trump. On Monday, he sent out a tweet defending Sandmann and the rest of the students.
"Looking line Nick Sandman & Covington Catholic students were treated unfairly with early judgments proving out to be false - smeared by media. Not good, but making big comeback!”
Just in: Statement of Nick Sandmann, Covington Catholic High School junior, about the event at the Lincoln Memorial: pic.twitter.com/PkuMh2cVZM— Jake Tapper (@jaketapper) January 20, 2019
Then the president quoted Fox News host Tucker Carlson, saying: “New footage shows that media was wrong about teen’s encounter with Native American.”
To diffuse the situation, all Nick Sandmann had to do was step aside and let Mr. Phillips through.— Carol Morgan (@CounselorCarol1) January 21, 2019
Additional video has come out that corroborates Sandmann’s statement. The clips showed the Covington Catholic students being confronted and yelled at before their clash with the Native American activists.
Wrong yet again, Trump. The “poor threatened boys” are clearly seen on camera shouting, jumping around, loud, dumb and unthreatened right in the face of the Mr Phillips. And wearing your Made in China hats, Mr Dealmaker— Phil Hendrie (@realphilhendrie) January 22, 2019
The students were harassed by a group called the Black Hebrew Israelites. In the videos, they can be heard taunting and shouting hateful things at the teenagers.
Forget the media. That boy standing right up near him, smirking and staring right in his face is not only antagonising but actually threatening. I don't believe for one second, Mr Trump, that you wouldn't be affronted by someone doing that to you.— Blarla 🐝 (@Blarla) January 22, 2019
It appears the students were targeted for wearing “Make America Great Again (MAGA)” hats. In part of his statement, Sandmann explained his actions saying:
“I did smile at one point because I wanted him to know that I was not going to become angry, intimidated or be provoked into a larger confrontation. I am a faithful Christian and practicing Catholic, and I always try to live up to the ideals my faith teaches me — to remain respectful of others, and to take no action that would lead to conflict or violence.”
Disgracefulhttps://t.co/1qiwISjMyi— Haaretz.com (@haaretzcom) January 20, 2019
The videos that came out showed a group of five black men debating with the mostly white students while protesting centuries of oppression. The confrontation happened outside of the Lincoln Memorial.
Phillips got involved earlier when tensions were flaring up. He claimed he started playing his drum to ease the anger between the two groups; instead, he was confronted by Sandmann who refused to get out of his way.