Adults who were serving as chaperones for a group of teens from Covington Catholic High School at the center of a media-generated controversy involving a Native American activist say they were “targeted” and that a widely-publicized confrontation was “staged.”
Following the annual March for Life in Washington, D.C., on Saturday, a number of students from the school, many white and donning MAGA hats, were embroiled in an incident involving Nathan Phillips, a Leftist Native American activist, as well as a group of Black Hebrew Israelites.
Early portrayals by the mainstream media (MSM) made it seem as though the students initiated contact with Phillips and the Black Israelites, though subsequent videos of the incident which surfaced later showed just the opposite.
Val Andreev, a parent and a chaperone, told the Cincinnati Enquirer that the group of teens wearing “Make America Great Again” hats proved to be a very visible target for those seeking to score political points against the president.
“Our boys were set up for this event,” Andreev said. “It was staged.”
Other parents also said that the teen boys had no intention of stirring up trouble.
“Our boys did nothing. No violence. They did not attack those gentlemen. They stood there waiting for their bus,” Jim Wilson told WKRC.
He added that the boys’ curiosity of what was happening around them was misinterpreted by media.
“They were curious of those men, so I got in between those men and the boys and pushed the boys back,” Wilson said. “Eventually, I could get eight to 10 of the boys that knew me, and I said, ‘We need to get out of here.'”
“Our boys were targeted,” Jill Hamlin, a Covington Catholic parent and chaperone, told WKRC.
Following the initial reporting of the incident, which was highly skewed to portray the teens in a negative light, celebrities, Democratic politicians, and Leftist commentators and academics piled on, accusing and threatening the Covington students.
Some media outlets have since published retractions, while others who initially accused the teens have also apologized.
“I think they were also targeted for what they stood for, which is Christianity, the right for life, and they were singled out and I believe partially because of the color of their skin they were targeted,” Hamlin added in an interview with “Fox & Friends.”
“We were all just gathered on the steps. You know, we had obviously heard the horrific insults that were thrown at our children by the Black Hebrew Israelites and the boys were gathered on the steps,” she added.
“I don’t know why Nathan Phillips chose Nick Sandmann. I think he would have targeted anyone but maybe it was because Nick Sandmann had the courage to look this man in the face and he tried to diffuse the situation by not reacting. And by standing there respectfully.”
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