It was announced yesterday that CNN had agreed to pay a rumored $25 million to settle the libel suit filed against it by Covington Catholic High School student Nick Sandmann. The lawsuit was prompted by the atrociously biased and misleading coverage of Sandmann’s participation in last year’s March for Life in Washington D.C.
Readers may remember the malestrom resulting from selectively edited video of then-16 year old Sandmann and classmates, who were waiting at the Lincoln Memorial for their bus to take them back home to Kentucky:
Sandmann and his classmates were in D.C. on January 18, 2019, for the March For Life and were waiting near the Lincoln Memorial for their bus to take them back home to Kentucky when they were accosted by the Black Hebrew Israelites, a black separatist fringe group known for making outrageous, racist, anti-gay statements, and [Nathan] Phillips, who was participating in the Indigenous Peoples March. A selectively edited video showing Sandmann calmly smiling at Phillips while the activist chanted and banged a drum in his face was misconstrued to suggest that the Covington kids were taunting a “Native American elder.” In reality, the kids were jumping up and down with excitement because they thought Phillips had approached them in a show of support after they had endured over an hour of vicious verbal abuse from the Black Hebrew Israelites.
Thanks to malicious, one-sided reporting about the incident on the part of the agenda-driven media, the teens and their families became the subjects of threats and harassment from a hateful online outrage mob.
The video went viral and prompted an avalanche of social media invective and condemnation from the Left. Sandmann was young, male, white and wearing a MAGA – all the evidence progressives activists need to decide these teenage boys are racists who deserved to be ostracized. Sandmann and his classmates were subjected to death threats, hat e mail, doxxing and other abuse from the furies of the social justice Left.
Only that narrative was false – although the damage done to these kids was real and lasting.
The connection to Anaheim? Councilman Jose F. Moreno and other local leftists were among those who – rather than wait for the facts to emerge – joined the social media lynch mob.
“This is why we must rise…together,” Moreno intones gravely.
Which prompted several Moreno followers to join his Two Minute Hate against the teenagers:
Mind you – none of these folks really knows anything about Sandmann and the other Covington students other than that they’re male, white, pro-life and conservative. Taking the’re cue from Moreno, they let their prejudices overwhelm their reason. Teresa Shimogawa is an AUHSD teacher and ASTA political action committee chair. Rather than give these teenagers the benefit of the doubt, she sneers at their parents, their faith and their belief in protecting unborn human beings.
Ana Gonzalez projects her prejudices onto Sandmann and joins left-wing activist and fellow AUHSD teacher Liz Gracian in fantasizing about engaging in physical violence against these boys.
Moreno continued piling on, promoting the idea these kids are sinister haters who are being protected by white supremacists:
A few days later, Moreno and a dozen other left-wing politicos got themselves in arrested in a high-profile exercise in conspicuous virtue signalling – for which the Orange County progressive cadres lavished him with love.
The CNN settlement stands as vindication for the Covington Catholic High School students and condemnation for leftists like Moreno who are quick to judge others on the basis of their race and sex. And it isn’t over – a number of other media entities and individuals were named in the libel suit, including the New York Times, the Washington Post and MSNBC.
Moreno and his acolytes like to portray themselves as standing up for the powerless against the powerful. A year ago, Sandmann and the other Covington Catholic High School students traveled to Washington DC for some civic engagement on behalf of their deeply held belief in the sanctity of human life – and found themselves at the receiving end of a vicious social media beat down fomented by powerful media entities. And Moreno, Shimogawa, Gracian and thousands of other “progressives” piled on with the powerful against the powerless.
Keep that in mind next time Councilman Moreno and his allies posture and preen and claim the moral high ground. In the meantime, an apology – and some self-examination – is in order.