Red hats, brown shirts, lying eyes

I’m sick of hearing about the feral MAGA children at the Lincoln Memorial this weekend, and I bet you are too. But the mainstream media is retreating from its mostly accurate original coverage and seems determined to make the smirky little snot at the center of it the conservative victimhood cover boy:

Maybe it wouldn’t matter much if this sort of incident were rare, but it’s not. Here’s another from yesterday:

An excerpt from that linked story:

The Star Tribune noted that Bridget Kahn commented on the post defending the flag’s appearance at the game. She said that it was hers and that it had been used by students as part of a USA theme night.

“I don’t see anything wrong with that,” she told the newspaper, adding that the students “don’t have a racist bone in their body.”

Kahn is the mother of a couple of the students with the flag and is therefore perhaps a little too mature to bat her eyes and play the dewy innocent. But I don’t believe for a minute the high school kids didn’t also know exactly what message that flag sent when they brandished it at a predominantly black visiting team.

This is commonplace these days. The president is a sexist boor and racist bully, and adults and kids alike are emboldened by his behavior. It’s an urgent national problem, and the last thing we need at this moment is for the mainstream media to droop into its usual defensive crouch.

On the Lincoln Memorial story, I’m not 100% sure, but I think Jake Tapper led the retreat when he retweeted some knob who writes for Reason and sought to muddy the waters by saying that additional video provided important context around the original viral Lincoln Memorial clip. I watched it, and it didn’t.

But that didn’t stop the MSM lemmings from following Tapper over the cliff. Here’s LZ Granderson at CNN with one of many bad takes:

It was such an easy sell — images of white kids from Kentucky wearing Make America Great Again hats and antagonizing elderly Native Americans seemed like racism personified. Right?

Not so fast. For those who believe all President Trump supporters are just a bunch of racists, the initial videos that surfaced of a confrontation at the Lincoln Memorial last weekend served as kindling for a fire that’s been burning since he was elected in November 8, 2016. Then the story got complicated.

I covered that 2016 election, from the numerous primary debates to that historic Tuesday night, and it’s been my experience that a significant number of Donald Trump’s supporters are racists. It has also been my experience that a significant number are not.

And while many liberals believe those ubiquitous red baseball caps are a modern-day white hood, the truth is they are not one and the same. The initial video clip of the Covington Catholic High School students — in which a teenage boy faced off with a Native American elder at the Indigenous People’s Rally — was a Rorschach inkblot.

The other clips that have since been released — in which a group of black men, self-identified as Hebrew Israelites, are seen taunting not only the students but hurling racist slurs at participants of the Indigenous Peoples Rally — is a reminder.

The decline in public libraries and the rise of tablets have made books less popular, but this age-old idiom still remains true: you can’t judge a book by its cover.

That’s not to suggest the high school students were all angels or that none of them harbor disappointing views about diversity. But the actions of the group of black men who identify as members of the Hebrew Israelites add depth to a story many thought was fairly easy to figure out.

And all because of a baseball cap.

It’s a reminder, alright — a reminder of the both-sides media contortions that are smothering our society. Somehow, the fact that a half-dozen African American crackpots taunted the MAGA teens first is supposed to make the boys’ subsequent treatment of a completely unaffiliated Native American man okay.

The behavior wasn’t okay, and this isn’t about a fucking baseball cap, no more than the MLK tournament incident in Minnesota was about a “USA theme night.”

People who flaunt their Trump garb, wave Trump flags, chant Trump’s name and scream “Build the wall!” at black or brown schoolmates or random passersby aren’t just expressing a different, possibly non-racist political opinion. They’re consciously aligning themselves with white supremacy, sexism and xenophobia that are ascendant in this country.

The fact that people in power hold these views is critically important. Contra Granderson, that makes the message even more menacing than that of a pathetic gaggle of Klansmen marching around a statue of Robert E. Lee with cops forming a barrier between the handful of sheet-wearers and an exponentially larger counter-protest.

The MAGA hats have the power. That’s the difference. And if that video clip was a Rorschach inkblot, it revealed the extent to which the mainstream media will go to excuse the misbehavior of white folks.

Anyway, I do think it’s important that the kids involved in the Lincoln Memorial incident were kids. Same goes for the high school students with the Trump flag. They aren’t irredeemable. Kids do dumb things that they grow up to regret later. Lord knows I did — and still do.

But making excuses for them does them no favors. Some things we do are shameful, and the capacity to experience shame is a good thing. It’s an opportunity for growth.

The problem is, adults aren’t giving these kids guidance. From the president on down, they’re encouraging the kids to act like bullies and shriek like scalded ferrets when anyone calls them on it. That’s the problem, and media self-flagellation is making it worse.

145 replies
  1. 1
    LAO says:

    I’m truly demoralized by the media surrender. I expect the coverage of the 2020 election is going to be a real shitshow

  2. 2
    Lex says:

    “Who you gonna believe, me or your lyin’ eyes?” was never a very good defense when I was an investigative reporter, and it’s not a very good defense for the Covington Catholic High School kids (or their expensive PR consultant with GOP ties) now. Laura Wagner at Deadspin speaks my mind.

  3. 3
    kindness says:

    It’s all too typical Trump & Trumpette mode. They want the freedom and ability to shit on others. They just don’t want to get called out for their behavior/actions and blamed for something that looks atrocious.

  4. 4

    A good portion of the media is fucking racist. They showed their true colors during the Obama administration and are now cementing that reputation in the T regime. I am tired of this nontroversy. These badly behaved young men were intimidating those who they deemed as their inferiors.

    ETA: And no I haven’t watched any of the videos starring these mini MAGAs, their hats and smirks tell me all I need to know.

  5. 5
  6. 6
    germy says:

    In America you can be anything
    if you hire the right Public Relations firm.

  7. 7
    tobie says:

    It’s a drop in the bucket but I called NBC media relations and left a message to say how outraged I am that the TODAY show has chosen to give a platform to racists. The phone number is: 212-413-6142. Anyone know how to find out who advertises during the TODAY show program?

  8. 8

    The president is a sexist boor and racist bully, and adults and kids alike are emboldened by his behavior.

    From what I’m hearing, these kids were pulling this shit long ago. Yes, there’s emboldening to go public. The flipside of that is that people are getting a lot more inclined to notice the racism that was already present.

    a reminder of the both-sides media contortions that are smothering our society.

    The national press, of course, are zealously devoted to the principle that racism is a tiny fringe phenomenon and certainly not the operating principle of the Republican Party. They always have been. I mean

    And while many liberals believe those ubiquitous red baseball caps are a modern-day white hood, the truth is they are not one and the same.

    They are exactly the same, and you don’t want to admit it, Granderson, because that would tear down your entire worldview.

  9. 9
    Derelict says:

    Q; What’s the worst possible thing that can happen to a news organization?
    A: Being called “liberal” by conservatives.
    Hence the need for more on-air contortionists than you’d see in a month worth of Cirque du Soliel performances.

  10. 10
    jl says:

    I saw what the US corporate news media is made of today when the miserable fake news person Cuomo ran like a spanked scared little dog to back up an absolutely asinine and brain dead troll that Kamala Harris is not a ‘natural born’ citizen and therefore cannot be president. Now the ass Cuomo is in bathetic and transparently silly CYA mode.

    Our news media is worse than worthless. Over half the time, on over half of the news topics, you know less after you watch than you do before.

  11. 11
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @Derelict: whenever I see my new friend Woke Bill Kristol on EvenTheLiberalMSNBC, I think about how he smirkingly admitted many years ago that the media-bashing strategy of the Right was “working the refs”, and then I wonder if any of my TV friends are going to ask him about paving the way for “fake news” and “enemy of the people”.

  12. 12

    @Frankensteinbeck: I have come to appreciate your comments, you see these people for who they are without lending them an air of invincibility.

  13. 13
    Humdog says:

    I have come to the understanding that, while being gaslit is very bad, watching others go along with the gaslighting is destabilizing to me. My step mother gaslit the whole family. I know there are evil people, and she is one. But when the rest of my family went along with her neurosis, went along with her version of “reality”, I was left feeling as if I cannot trust the witness of my own eyes and ears.
    I didn’t watch much of the MAGAt kids video, as I do not need to witness more cruelty being celebrated. I saw enough to judge the kids actions. Then the media, who have no reason to go along with the PR version, decided to go along with the gaslighting. This whole situation has nothing to do with me but I am right back to my teen years, worrying that I cannot judge reality for myself. I never learned a healthy way to deal with this so I go back to my old “cope” strategy, thinking of ways to kill myself.
    On one hand it is silly, I recognize. But the deep stomach panic, the unbidden tears that pour out when I’m not even consciously thinking about this stupid happening across the continent, and the worry about my household if I give in…….
    man, I am such a stupid wimp. The only comfort I find is trying to stick close to those who still label reality properly, but that also brings me into contact with my nemesis. I’m gonna go to bed and have a cry now.

  14. 14
    Adam L Silverman says:

    From an Episcopal priest who used to be assigned in the Episcopal parish in the area.

  15. 15
    Elizabelle says:

    I hope this blows up in NBC’s face. Shame on them. The extended video did NOT vindicate the kids. Rightwing whambulance just assured people too lazy to look for themselves that it did.

    Savannah’s gonna tongue-bath the kid and whitewash him even more than he has been already. She might ask some “tough(TM)” question, but there will be no followup. What, she’s gonna beat up on a white high school boy, on national TV?

    The PR firm the lying kid’s parents hired is tied to Mitch McConnell’s 2020 re-election campaign. One of its three principals is a conservative columnist and commentator on CNN. Looking for that info for you now.


  16. 16
    Turner Hedenkoff says:

    >The MAGA hats have the power. That’s the difference.
    Indeed. They seem confident that tomorrow belongs to them

  17. 17
    Elizabelle says:

    On the good side, these kids and their community within the school are what they are. They’re going to pull the second iteration of George Zimmerman, down the road. (Wherein he was unmasked as a dangerous fraud. Although, he had literally gotten away with murder in cold blood by then.)

  18. 18

    @Adam L Silverman: Why is bigotry against Native Americans characterized as xenophobia. They were here before Sandmann’s ancestors.

  19. 19
    trollhattan says:

    Can somebody get an interview with members of the Tamir Rice family for their thoughts on “letting boys be boys?”

    Thanks, in advance.

  20. 20
    🇺🇸🌎 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka)  🗳🌷 says:

    Fuck NBC. That is all.

  21. 21
    Brickley Paiste says:

    Longer videos from wider perspectives emerged later over the Martin Luther King holiday weekend. They revealed that the drummer had intervened between the boys and the religious sect, at a moment when the teens seemed to be getting rowdier and the black street preacher with a megaphone who had been making racist statements against both groups was escalating his rhetoric.

    Soon, all sides were pointing fingers , speaking their own truths about feeling victimized and misunderstood. And even after a fuller picture emerged, many people didn’t seem ready Tuesday to let it go.

  22. 22
    Timurid says:

    This feels scarier than Charlottesville, even though the original event was relatively minor (nobody hurt, much less killed). It shows that elites (reflected by the media who are paid to represent them) are now all in for the Trumpist agenda. They may not all like or respect Trump, and many probably wish none of this had ever happened. But they’re scared that a collapse of the Trump regime will cascade to the point where elite/white privilege is endangered.Sun Tzu advised that “in death ground, fight.” Elites believe that Trump has led them into death ground, so they have no choice but to back him to the end. And if this level of panic is caused by a bunch of kids having their feelings hurt very, very badly… what happens if people like them are harmed for real? The true extinction-level event would be a terrorist attack directed at white people. Not jihadists, fascists or anarchists fighting over religion and politics and targeting people who happen to be white.. but white people being hurt and killed because they are white. If and when that happens, we are beyond screwed…

    PS- The 2020 election is going to be a total fuckshow…

  23. 23
    trollhattan says:

    Maybe she’s trying out for a future press secretary gig. Although the pay cut would be hefty….

  24. 24
    Yarrow says:

    Savannah Guthrie looks like she doesn’t want to be there. If that’s the case she should have refused do the interview.

  25. 25

    @Humdog: {{{ }}} they won’t succeed.

  26. 26

    @tobie: Thank you! I just called and left a message in between everything else I’m doing! Now out to shovel the steps!

  27. 27
    Humdog says:

    @schrodingers_cat: thank you, cat. Your short note seeing me really means a lot. Off to bed.

  28. 28
    ThresherK says:

    @tobie: You can watch the Today show for that. But then again, I don’t wish to do so either.

  29. 29
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @schrodingers_cat: I have no idea. I didn’t write those tweets.

  30. 30
    🇺🇸🌎 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka)  🗳🌷 says:

    I noticed that too, after I read your comment. She looks like she’s sitting next to a smelly wildebeest or something.

  31. 31
    Elizabelle says:

    From the Louisville Courier-Journal, and the writer is a bit too taken with the ‘vindication!” theme; what a tool.

    Louisville PR firm played a key role in Covington Catholic controversy

    … But by Sunday evening, the coverage of what happened provided a more detailed account of events, along with a statement from Sandmann that seemed to tamp down the explosion of anger against the teen — thanks in part to extended video [oh bullshit] from the rally and the involvement of Louisville public relations firm RunSwitch PR.

    On Sunday night, Sandmann released a three-page statement in which Nick defended his actions and offered his version of events. Describing himself as a Christian and practicing Catholic, he wrote that the Native American man, Nathan Phillips, had approached him, not the other way around. Phillips supported that in separate interviews later in the weekend.

    Asked about its role, RunSwitch released a statement saying that the firm “has been retained by the Sandmann family to offer professional counsel with what has become a national media story. We are working with the family to ensure an accurate recounting of events which occurred this past weekend.”

    RunSwitch partners Steve Bryant and Gary Gerdemann said that Sandmann family asked people they knew over the weekend about getting help with handling the media.

    “They reached out to our firm, and we responded,” said Bryant, adding that the business specializes in crisis management “all over the country.”

    Scott Jennings, a conservative political commentator and a columnist for the Courier Journal, is the third partner in RunSwitch.

    …. Sandmann and his family’s statement said in part that the teen wasn’t trying to inflame tensions.

    “I believed that by remaining motionless and calm, I was helping to diffuse the situation. I realized everyone had cameras and that perhaps a group of adults was trying to provoke a group of teenagers into a larger conflict. I said a silent prayer that the situation would not get out of hand,” he said in the statement.

    “… 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.”

    The statement came amid a pivot on coverage of the story on Sunday, after more video emerged showing other protesters at the scene yelling at and taunting the Covington students.

    Pivot my ass. That was paid for obfuscation.

    Caught a clip of Amy Goodman interviewing the native elder. She asked him what he thought of Sandmann’s statement. His repsonse:

    Because that is exactly what these rightwing liars have done. Tried to put white boy Nick in the role of peacemaker.

    Don’t let them get away with it.

  32. 32
    banditqueen says:

    Erin Biba (the thread is worthwhile):

    This Covington school bullshit is the perfect example of allies gone wrong. A little PR spin and folks just ignored what they saw with their own eyes. These are exactly the moments when white people need to look at ourselves and ask WHY did you let yourself be manipulated?

    Our failed media experiment–they just don’t focus if they don’t have to.

  33. 33
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    Hillary proven right again. They’re deplorable.

  34. 34
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Yarrow: This is all Andrew Lack’s doing.

  35. 35
    tobie says:

    @Cheryl Rofer: Wait…did it snow in the Santa Fe/Albuquerque/Los Alamos region of New Mexico??? I guess that happens but I always thought that in your corner of Paradise you never got more than a dusting. Thanks for taking the time to call NBC!

  36. 36
    Brachiator says:

    Let’s see now:

    And while many liberals believe those ubiquitous red baseball caps are a modern-day white hood, the truth is they are not one and the same. The initial video clip of the Covington Catholic High School students — in which a teenage boy faced off with a Native American elder at the Indigenous People’s Rally — was a Rorschach inkblot.

    The other clips that have since been released — in which a group of black men, self-identified as Hebrew Israelites, are seen taunting not only the students but hurling racist slurs at participants of the Indigenous Peoples Rally — is a reminder.

    The decline in public libraries and the rise of tablets have made books less popular, but this age-old idiom still remains true: you can’t judge a book by its cover.

    That’s not to suggest the high school students were all angels or that none of them harbor disappointing views about diversity. But the actions of the group of black men who identify as members of the Hebrew Israelites add depth to a story many thought was fairly easy to figure out.

    And all because of a baseball cap.

    If the media can’t have it’s favorite token of purity, a blonde white girl or woman, it can at least have its white “high school students” being menaced by a group of scary black men. Because, America, shut up, that’s why.

    And of course, the only person who seemed to be behaving honorably was the Native American elder who, apparently, does not make for good television.

    And none of this has shit to do with a baseball cap. Except for the part where entitled little white pissants feel that it gives them extra power to act out their asshole fantasies.

  37. 37
    James E Powell says:

    The people in the press/media are the most effective protectors of white privilege and the myth of white male supremacy. If they do it, they will always be rewarded (Megyn Kelly). If they fail to do it, they will lose their shows, not be invited back on, etc.

  38. 38
    gene108 says:

    Has the media never gone to college, or ridden the NYC subway?

    When I was in college, there was always some crackpot preacher on the street corner shouting about how we were all damned and handing out pamphlets to passers by.

    You get the odd rambling nut case on the subway, shouting their “profound” insights of the world, to what is temporarily a captive audience on the subway car.

    All the Black Israelites were doing is what we’ve all seen on street corners or elsewhere. It is what we get to deal with, because of the 1st Amendment. And most of us, even when I was in college, had the good sense to ignore the crackpot preacher and keep going and minding our own business. There’d be to occasional person, who’d try to argue with the crackpot preacher, but they weren’t threatening to start a fight.

    These kids behaved immaturely to something that has been happening in America for decades, probably because they thought they had strength in numbers versus a half-dozen “old guys”.

  39. 39
    JPL says:

    @Villago Delenda Est: No she wasn’t. She said 1/3 of his supporters are deplorable. That has been proven wrong, by his polling numbers at this point. If it were a third he’d be polling in the teens and twenties. He’s only lost less than ten percent of his supporters.

    correction.. he’d be polling around sixteen percent if only 1/3 were deplorable. They all are.

  40. 40

    When I look at the videos of those boys, I’d swear they were drunk. I assume they weren’t, but they show the same kind of uninhibited behavior.

  41. 41
    Elizabelle says:

    RE Scott Jennings, one of the PR firm’s principals working on behalf of white liar boy Nick Sandmann:

    From Real Clear Politics:

    Scott Jennings, CNN contributor, rails against the leaders of the new Democratic Party, the “creepy porn lawyer” Michael Avenatti, “Spartacus” Cory Booker, and Sen. Elizabeth Warren, who he refers to as “Bizarro Pocahontas,” in a segment Monday night discussing Sen. Warren’s DNA test and the Democratic Party’s current lineup of potential presidential candidates in 2020.

  42. 42
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @James E Powell: This is just one of the reasons for my nym.

    Wipe them out. All of them.

  43. 43
    ThresherK says:

    Didnt Bobby Thompson and Ralph Branca make appearances together and talk about the 1951 playoff game Thompson hit the homer off Branca in?

    Similarly, I’m waiting for some TV idiot to invite the Covington kid and Nathan Philips and ask them to shake hands.

  44. 44
    tobie says:

    @Adam L Silverman: You’re probably right. I’d still like to know how Republican viewers managed to cow the media into submission. Did they call and fax non-stop? Did they wage campaigns against advertisers? Or was it something more sinister like filling the news rooms with conservatives (e.g., former College Republican Jonathan Karl, Kim-Davis-promoter Terry Moran, ex-GOP-Justice-Dept-official Pete Williams)? Just curious how a group that is now a minority can exercise such outsized influence.

  45. 45
    Adam L Silverman says:

    They seem nice!

  46. 46
    jl says:

    @Brickley Paiste: “all sides”

    Simply dishonest to implicitly characterize Phillips that way. He didn’t point figures, didn’t play victim. He tried to do a good deed. He’s been the most honest and forthright about what happened and what he did, IMHO.
    Is anyone interviewing Phillips today?

  47. 47
    Ohio Mom says:

    I’d like to see them ask the kid who took off his shirt to dance for the Black Hebrew Israelites to come on the show and do an encore performance.

    Share with everyone how serious and respectful they are.

  48. 48
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @JPL: I sit corrected. She was being an optimist.

  49. 49
    Elizabelle says:

    More on the MAGA Kid’s WHITEwasher, Scott Jennings, PR principal extraordinaire: from his speaker’s bureau bio:

    … Scott’s career has taken him across the country as part of four presidential campaigns and numerous federal and state races. He served in key roles in both of President George W. Bush’s campaigns in 2000 and 2004, before becoming Special Assistant to the President in 2005, serving under top Bush strategist Karl Rove in the White House Office of Political Affairs.

    …. Scott’s White House portfolio included political appointments, including roles in the confirmation of two US Supreme Court Justices: John Roberts and Samuel Alito. He advised The White House on the President’s domestic travel and wrote numerous briefings for the President, Vice President, and senior-level White House officials. He was a front-line briefer for visiting groups ….

    Scott served in senior communications positions on several highly-targeted races, notably helping elect US Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell in 2002, 2008, and 2014 as well as Congressman Brett Guthrie from 2008 to present. Jennings has written speeches and other content for numerous political leaders on a range of topics, and is regarded as one of Leader McConnell’s top outside political advisors. In 2016, Scott was a consultant to Jeb Bush in the Republican presidential primary before becoming a political commentator and polling analyst on Fox News in the Fall. In 2012, Scott ran Mitt Romney’s Ohio operations in the most-targeted battleground state in the election.

    In 2014 and 2016, Scott served as Senior Advisor to Kentuckians for Strong Leadership (KSL), a Super PAC that spent millions helping re-elect Senator McConnell. In 2016, KSL was the lead independent expenditure group for Republicans who finally flipped the Kentucky House to GOP control for the first time in a century.

    Before politics and business, Scott was an award-winning journalist for Clear Channel Communications (WHAS Radio and the Kentucky News Network) from 1996 to 2000. He returned to his journalistic roots in 2013 when he joined Gannett’s Louisville Courier-Journal as a conservative columnist, tackling issues like “corrosive political tribalism” and President Donald J. Trump’s deals with Democratic leaders. He also writes for and you can regularly find him quoted by CNN, The New York Times, the Associated Press, Politico, The Hill, Roll Call, National Journal, National Public Radio (NPR), U.S. News & World Report, and other major national news outlets.

    How White Boy Nick Sandmann, peacemaker, ends up on Today with Savannah Guthrie. Mommy and Daddy got what they paid for.

    And Mitch is gonna ride this to keep his Senate seat in 2020.

    ETA: Tackling corrosive political tribalism? More like fomenting and deploying it.

  50. 50
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Humdog: We’re here.

  51. 51
    trollhattan says:

    @Adam L Silverman:
    Hey, just because the Colts didn’t make the Superbowl, again, doesn’t…oh, wait.

  52. 52
    trollhattan says:

    @Adam L Silverman:
    Right up until I read “Greece, NY” I was going in a completely different direction.

  53. 53
    bemused says:

    @Dorothy A. Winsor:

    As clever Betty wrote, feral maga children. I also love the quip John Cole said iirc, Kavanaugh starter kits.

  54. 54
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @tobie: Sandmann’s parents hired a well connected, including to McConnell, PR firm that does crisis response and communication for conservative organizations and Republican politicians.

  55. 55
    Elizabelle says:

    @Adam L Silverman:

    Andrew Lack is a real problem. Big reason we have Trump.

  56. 56
    Kay says:

    They really were poorly chaperoned. I’m sort of a “free range” parent- I give them a lot of leash- and I’ve been a chaperone on 2 high school trips and we never had them just wandering around, rebutting random speakers and screaming at passing women. The whole thing is designed to keep them busy .
    It’s like “science museum, aquarium, rush thru the gift shop, throw down some food and get back on the bus”. It’s way more regimented than a family trip, or my family trips anyway, and I get that because kids in a large group are a much different animal than individual kids. You want to avoid exactly what’s shown in the video- the mob mind.
    I’m specifically interested in the part where the boys said they asked if they could start chanting back slogans – and got permission. What was that about? That to me would be a red flag “move them along” because it’s territory claiming- it’s saying “we’re claiming this ground”. The adult chaperones didn’t realize the Hebrew group look for a reaction? That key to that would be not reacting? And where ARE the adult chaperones? Shouldn’t we see or hear from them in the videos?

  57. 57

    @jl: Is anyone interviewing Phillips today?

    See, this is what I want to know. Where’s “bothsides” when we need it? If they can have snotnose here on, then why not an adult Veteran to tell his side of things??

    @ThresherK: I’m waiting for some TV idiot to invite the Covington kid and Nathan Philips and ask them to shake hands.

    Well, that would be truly repulsive , and probably that would be how they’d do it. But guess what- I’d bet that Phillips could pull it off and snotnose would end up just looking snottier.

  58. 58
    trollhattan says:

    EVERY field trip my kid has been on had a signed permission slip provision that the parent was responsible for coming and retrieving the kid if they broke the rules, and rules include bringing shame upon the school. It would seem this particular school is proud of their future leaders in political garb. That chaperone who is right there in the videos should be on suspension right now.

  59. 59
    CatFacts says:

    I posted this on a late-night thread yesterday, but it’s worth repeating for the day crowd. Sandmann’s mother Julie is a VP of Relationship Management at Fidelity’s Cincinnati branch. They might want to know what kind of brand ambassador their customers, or their competitors’ customers, think she is.

  60. 60
    khead says:


    When I was riding the DC Metro regularly ~15 years ago, it was the LaRouchies.

    These kids behaved immaturely to something that has been happening in America for decades, probably because they thought they had strength in numbers versus a half-dozen “old guys”.

    And I want to say again that I think this is an important part of the story. No way those kids were gonna step to the black folks so they went after the old guy instead.

  61. 61
    Elizabelle says:

    @Kay: The ratio was roughly 1:12 or thereabouts, and the chaperones may be as badly brought up as the kids.

    Clearly, their judgment was terrible. Plus, perhaps less Park Police around than usual? (Thanks, shutdown.)

    Cannot confirm it, but have heard the school’s teaching staff is lily white.

  62. 62
    jl says:

    @John Revolta: And speaking of which, what about the Black Hebrew Israelites? They seem to be weird group from what people say, and might not come off too well. Or maybe they don’t want to talk. But if you are going to ‘all sides’ it, why not cover ‘all sides’ and let them talk if they want. I think that is how reporting works. As opposed to corrupt reality shows and vehicles for making $ through commercials that is really all corporate news is now. It has to be some making $ through ads. But I see little real news in it at all anymore.

  63. 63
    Emma says:

    That kid is trouble. Any objective teacher or librarian would know that at five hundred yards. And with mommy and daddy buying him out of trouble, I’d bet good money on his gracing the police blotter at some point — and not for shoplifting a candy bar, either.

  64. 64
    ThresherK says:

    @JPL: I thought Hillary said half of them were deplorable. But “now we’re just arguing over the price”.

    Also it appears folks who still identify as Trump supporters all are crowding on the Deplorable Train.

  65. 65
    🇺🇸🌎 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka)  🗳🌷 says:


    and the chaperones may be as badly brought up as the kids.

    Make that definitely, not may. The ones interviewed have at every turn tried to blame everybody else but themselves and their kids. Complete fecklessness.

  66. 66
    E. says:

    It’s nice to see I am not alone. This thing has me terrified — not the event, the utterly bizarre whitewashing of it in the media. I got on CNN this morning and saw a raft of articles along the “Wait, new information changes everything!” line and then I read the repugnant “analysis” piece and just about collapsed. I fear more for my country and my people with every passing day but this was a real blow. I’m still reeling. The commenter above who said this is more scary than Charlottesville is right. I will never forget Heather Heyer and from a personal perspective it does not get much worse than murder, but from a cultural and political perspective, this seems worse.

  67. 67
    gene108 says:


    You’re probably right. I’d still like to know how Republican viewers managed to cow the media into submission. Did they call and fax non-stop?

    My understanding, from what I have read, is they did call non-stop. When the religious right started organizing they already had a command and control structure in place, their churches. The leaders of the religious right would get local preachers to sign onto their agenda and these preachers would then push their congregants to call non-stop. This caught a fuck ton of people off guard, from the media to politicians.

    Remember seeing something on YouTube about an Illinois law, in the 1980’s, that would’ve tightened up rules regarding child abuse and it was defeated because the religious right issued a call to arm and overwhelmed state legislators.

    Anyway, another reason, is the whole “liberal” media was coordinated, not just from the religious rabble, but going up to Republican Presidents, such as Nixon and Presidential candidates, like Goldwater and Reagan.

    They’ve been working the media at every level imaginable for over 50 years.

    I doubt we will be able to get Democratic office holders to slag the media the same way Republican office holders have been doing for a decades.

    And I think having power people, whose inputs the news media wants, slagging them helped really change the tenor of reporting, because these are serious people, who understand issues and don’t just say something out of emotional anguish, like the rabble are ought to do.

  68. 68
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @Kay: I’m specifically interested in the part where the boys said they asked if they could start chanting back slogans – and got permission. What was that about? That to me would be a red flag “move them along” because it’s territory claiming- it’s saying “we’re claiming this ground”.

    Well said. The thing for the chaperones to do was move their charges away from the kooks, maybe one of them goes and gets a cop and says, “Those guys are harassing our students with the some really ugly language.” What the chaperones did was encourage confrontation

  69. 69
    trollhattan says:

    Have we heard from Squi yet?

  70. 70
    Yarrow says:

    @Adam L Silverman: I’m sure it is. I’m highly skeptical of him. Not to be trusted.

  71. 71
    cope says:

    I didn’t watch the original video, nor the “context” video nor the video by the young ladies who were harassed by whom they believe to be the Covington boys earlier in the day. In point of fact, I never watch any “news” videos any more. It may seem shallow and superficial but I learned all I need to from the smirk on MAGABoy’s face in the video still.

    I hope Tbogg revives his “Deserves to be Punched in the Face” column. I was going to temper myself and suggest “Slapped in the Face” instead but, meh, Trump made me do it. This president* is bringing out the worst in his supporters and detractors as well. Trump is the pink slime in Ghostbusters II.

  72. 72
    jl says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist: ” What the chaperones did was encourage confrontation. ”

    Did they? If so (and it does look like ‘so’), there’s your news story. I’ve chaperoned on trips like this for students from HS through professional students. I never got any training that said it’s a good or responsible idea egg on a group of kids in a confrontation.

  73. 73
    MagdaInBlack says:

    Have we actually heard from any of these “chaperones?”
    (pardon if i missed it)
    My bet: these little a**holes ditched the chaperones and were out screwing around, and got filmed doing it.

  74. 74
    banditqueen says:

    The PR firm is working to get their magat Emma Gonzalez and David Hogg. The prayerful, clean-cut, all-American white students–protecting unborn babies!–who were ‘menaced’ by non-whites. (well, 4 Black Israelites, 1 Elder native American, and 30-40 athletic students and their ‘chaperones’). The media are easily manipulated as noted earlier, and have an all too receptive audience–a PR dream.

  75. 75
    Betty Cracker says:

    @Humdog: Ugh, gaslighting kinfolks are the fucking worst! Hang in there, and be kind to yourself. It’s not your fault.

  76. 76
    jl says:

    @MagdaInBlack: I heard one guy make excuses. And if what JFL commented above is true, looks like he lied. He said he tried to defuse the situation, which is what any normal adult would do in such a situation.

  77. 77

    @Adam L Silverman:It was a rhetorical question, and not directed at you. The reply was to you because the original quote was in your comment.

  78. 78
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @jl: the kids say they got permission from the chaperones to start chanting back at the Hebrew Israelites. As Kay put it: “Claim this ground.”

  79. 79
    JPL says:

    @ThresherK: Yes they are. OMG It was 1/2. I think it’s safe to say that any one who still supports him belong in that basket.

  80. 80
    Duane says:

    @Lex: Everyday it’s something else with these butt hurt white priviledge assholes. Lying eyes is right.
    How about an apology and some sincere attempt to show it. No, not these people. They go on the offensive. Normalization of Trumpism is unacceptable.

  81. 81

    @jl: Well now, you’ve got me there. That bunch is straight-up nuts, or more likely, grifters like the Westboro Baptists. I wouldn’t want to be the producer who had to decide to put them on TV.

  82. 82
    Elizabelle says:

    The capitulation of the news media is just horrendous. Maybe they will do another about face, but they did not have to do this one.

    Because the extended video does not bear a vindication out.

    They are lying to us. Lying, lying, lying to us.

  83. 83
    🇺🇸🌎 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka)  🗳🌷 says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist:

    “Claim this ground.”

    Or should it be, “Stand Your Ground”?

  84. 84
    Matt McIrvin says:

    So the latest thing I heard is that we shouldn’t be talking about this at all because the whole story was promoted by a bot account in order to distract us from McConnell’s stupid wall proposal, and all is lost now because we talked about it.

    I dunno, I’m on record as thinking that the power of distraction as a reason to not talk about problems is overblown…

  85. 85
    Elizabelle says:

    @John Revolta: Yes. They are precisely Wesboro Baptist, in different guise.

    Right down to filming their interactions (which in this case was extremely helpful for seeing the truth of the situation).

  86. 86
    JPL says:

    @trollhattan: He teaches at a school a few miles from me.

  87. 87
    Plato says:

    Apartheid amurkkka has arrived?

  88. 88
    🇺🇸🌎 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka)  🗳🌷 says:

    I really don’t understand why. Unless somebody at one of these news orgs wanted to vindicate these twerps because they wanted to believe they were the victims.

  89. 89
    JPL says:

    @MagdaInBlack: One chaperone came out and said she didn’t see anything wrong.

  90. 90
    Kay says:

    @Matt McIrvin:

    I think that’s valid and I worry about it too. I can’t tell what is “distraction” and what isn’t – I just don’t know.

    But it is a concern- that we miss giant power grabs while all this is going on.

  91. 91
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    there’s at least one middle-aged man in this video, though I don’t know if that was one of the Covington chaperones. There are also girls in this picture, so it looks like there was more than one school group milling around

    Yashiya @ MeloStreetVybz
    Here’s what you forgot to report about your #trump supporters. “It’s not rape if you enjoy it”

  92. 92
    tobie says:

    @gene108: Thanks for some of the back story. I find it hard to imagine the left being mobilized by an anti-media campaign in the same way the right is. But even the biggest rightwing ass in the media still wants to make money and I would think that they’d be conscious of the fact that they would lose quite a bit of revenue if they ended up alienating over half the population.

  93. 93
    trollhattan says:

    Lovely. Kegga Brew U?

    ETA $15-23k/year K-8? Yowza.

  94. 94
  95. 95
    Betty Cracker says:

    @Kay: Great points. I agree with what you said earlier about hating pile-ons too. I wish people were as free to be awful in relative obscurity as they were 20 years ago.

    What the kids did was disrespectful, but lord knows we’ve seen worse. If they’d said, “These other guys pissed us off, and we apologize for being disrespectful…”

    But are people in MAGA mode even capable of that? Doesn’t look like it. Maybe someday they’ll come to their senses. Trump is a toxin in our national bloodstream. More like a matastasization.

  96. 96

    @tobie: We have been getting a few inches of snow a couple of times a week. Los Alamos got 2-3 feet a couple of weeks ago. We’re high enough in the mountains (7200 feet) that snow is not surprising. The last two or three years have been dry. I am looking forward to cactus flowers this spring.

  97. 97
    trollhattan says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist:
    Last weekend somebody IDd dude in a green shirt who’s school staff near the front of the scrum. Definitely not off pondering the lovely statuary.

  98. 98
    Kay says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist:

    Right, and WITH that school culture, that win/lose culture they proudly claim setting it up as a showdown would be the LAST thing one would allow.

    I don’t know- isn’t this common sense? Social workers in my abuse, neglect and dependency cases will write “parent REDIRECTED appropriately”. They mean the kid was drifting into bad behavior and the parent moved them to a task or a different conversation.

    You don’t say “yeah, CHANT BACK- let’s get further into this and declare a WINNER!” That to me was the critical point when the adults could be useful and helpful. Instead they allowed the kids to turn it into a pissing match.

  99. 99
    Elizabelle says:

    @Betty Cracker: Your blogpost was a terrific essay.

    The gaslighting bothers me tremendously.

  100. 100
    tobie says:

    @Cheryl Rofer: Sounds like lots of shoveling this year. Hope that leads to more beautiful blossoms in the spring.

    @Matt McIrvin: I don’t think the PR operation to clear the Covington bullies of a ll blame was a planned distraction but the fact that it was picked up by the media immediately has become such a glaring example of white privilege that it’s impossible to ignore.

  101. 101
    Mike in NC says:

    These high school shitbirds went to DC specifically to participate in an anti-abortion rally. I’m still expecting a group to get invited to the White House for Big Macs and a chance for Fat Bastard to autograph their MAGA hats. Maybe Ted Nugent will make a surprise appearance.

  102. 102
    debbie says:

    Betty, that Reason knob (Robby Soave) got quite the platform on NPR’s On Point. What a smug, little twit he is!

  103. 103
    debbie says:

    What I’m worried about now is whether Trump will crash the House of Representatives next week to give his SOTU. Can he do this?

  104. 104
    JWR says:


    The capitulation of the news media is just horrendous.

    The swiftness of the sudden turnaround has me fuming. It’s like the WMD story on meth.

  105. 105
    The Midnight Lurker says:

    Anybody who has been paying attention has seen NBC (and the other major networks) turning more and more towards the FOX business model – racism sells.

    NBC thought hiring Megan Kelly was a smart idea. Why would they think that? Surely, those overpaid bozos at 30 Rock had to have seen some of her more cringe-worthy moments during her tenure at FOX. They hired her anyway. THAT should tell everyone everything they need to know about NBC programming executives.

    Where do you think these programming executives come from? Places like Covington High School.

    On a related note, Paddy Chayefsky’s Network (1976) was both brilliant and prescient. It’s a shame we never heeded the warning.

  106. 106
    Steve in the ATL says:

    @trollhattan: and it’s not even a particularly good school!

  107. 107
    JaySinWA says:

    @Dorothy A. Winsor: They claim they were high on their own supply. The chanting hyped them up. I wouldn’t be shocked if there was a little additional assistance,

  108. 108
    JPL says:

    @debbie: He thinks he can, but Nancy can lock the doors and call a recess. This might come as a shock to you, but I hate the bastard.

  109. 109
    jl says:

    @Elizabelle: Most of the corporate news is high profit margin, easy to produce, low rent boring (to normal people) reality TV.
    Much of it far lower quality and more irresponsible than anything the Kardashians would feel comfortable pumping out.
    Much of the rest of it is social engineering, for profit, for their rich corporate sponsors.

  110. 110
    debbie says:


    No more than I do, believe me. Bigly!

  111. 111
    Redshift says:

    I found this whole thing to be extremely disheartening as well. It was brought up on a discussion board of a small group of former co-workers, and except for one who is also somewhat of an activist, they all completely bought into “now that we have more context” and “What I heard was…” I hate getting involved to dispute that sort of thing, because I’m very non-confrontational, but I felt obligated not to let it go. With a few key facts, they let go of some of the worst of it, but the general consensus was still “they were provoked, and sure they were assholes but they weren’t racist.” And one woman, whose politics I know are not on the conservative side, ended up at “doubtful the boys were yelling anything without some sort of provocation” and “I have no doubt they were getting shit all day in DC for their maga hats.”

    WTF? I want to say — you haven’t lived in the DC area since before 2016, and I have. No one gives people shit just for wearing a maga hat; we know they’re probably assholes and we try to ignore them. And they weren’t on a field trip for a museum visit; they were part of an event that is all about giving shit to other people, and there were plenty of leftovers doing just that at the Women’s March the day after this.

    But I don’t think it would do any good, and it would be even more depressing.

  112. 112

    the high school kids who were raging racist assholes when I was in high school are the same raging racist assholes crowing MAGA shit on my and my friends Facebook feeds. Growing up did not change a goddamn thing with them.

    there is no excuse for these privileged private school white boy rapist-in-training bastards. lock them up now.

  113. 113
    Waynski says:

    Teenagers act like @holes. Story at 11. Honestly, this is a silly thing to be going on about. No one was hurt. Let’s keep our eyes on the prize of uprooting Rs from government root and branch.

  114. 114
    Redshift says:

    One of the other depressing things about my little chat today is that the younger the former co-worker, the more sympathetic they were to the assholes. I work for a news company these days (on the tech side), and one of the most disheartening things I’ve learned is that part of the reason it’s hard to get millennials to subscribe to newspapers (or even read one for free) is that even the non-wingnuts have totally absorbed the idea that they need more than one source to avoid “bias.” To get that, they read news through Facebook or Google or Apple, where the source is not prominently identified, so they’re getting wingnut propaganda in their “unbiased” mix with little indication of where it’s coming from.

  115. 115
    Sebastian says:

    @Cheryl Rofer:

    I got a real person who apologized profusely, didn’t even have to explain why I am calling so they are definitely feeling the heat.

    I was kind to Sherry who took my call, told her not to apologize as it’s not her fault and I am not mad at her.

    But I told her to put down that I a shareholder and I will make sure this is brought up in the next shareholder meeting. FWIW.

  116. 116
    Kathleen says:


    A good portion of the media is fucking racist. They showed their true colors during the Obama administration and are now cementing that reputation in the T regime

    Boom. Nailed it as always.

  117. 117
    Mnemosyne says:


    I’m starting to think that this whole media push is really to prevent the adults from facing any consequences for their poor decisions, not the kids. A group of teenage boys is going to make dumb decisions if left to their own devices, which is why you NEVER leave a group of teenage boys to their own devices. Ever.

    The chaperones and teachers are trying to hide behind the kids, but I’m not sure it’s working. The most common question I keep seeing people ask on Twitter and Facebook is, “Where were the adults?”

  118. 118
    Elizabelle says:

    @tobie: Thank you for the NBC number. Long wait, so I hung up. But I will call later, and will call on other occasions too.

    I am pleasantly surprised they staff it with humans who listen. NPR makes you email them.

  119. 119
    Elizabelle says:

    @Mnemosyne: Yes! This!

    There is a real problem with the culture of that school. It was shut again today, for “security” reasons.

  120. 120
    Mnemosyne says:


    Ask them the question I keep asking: Where were the adults? What kind of chaperones let their kids get into hour-long arguments with street preachers while on a school field trip? Why were the adults not supervising the boys?

  121. 121
    WaterGirl says:

    Every time I see this photo of Pelosi and Trump shaking hands I get enraged all over again.

    Trump is such a total dick that he shakes Pelosi’s hand at a height that is obviously not reasonable or comfortable for her, and I am sure this was a power move on his part.

    Total. Dick. About. Everything.

    God, I loathe this man.

  122. 122
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @Mnemosyne: hooting and hollering and basically holding a high school pep rally at the Lincoln Memorial.

    Party of Lincoln my fucking ass.

  123. 123
    The Midnight Lurker says:

    Just figure anybody wearing a MAGA hat is spoiling for a fight.

    Down here in Texas, even other less caustic Trump supporters give the MAGAs a wide berth. They are always trying to bully or intimidate someone. I’ve heard from other Trump supporters that they are even more vicious towards former MAGA, or anyone who voted for Trump and subsequently changed their mind, than they are against your garden variety liberal.

    A motorcycle cop friend said his antenna always goes up a little whenever he knows he’s dealing with a MAGA. They are always enraged when pulled over, even for the most minor of traffic offenses. And most of them carry.

    Fuck Godwin’s law — MAGA are the new brownshirts.

  124. 124
    Kathleen says:

    @Dorothy A. Winsor: I had the same thought. Drunk or high.

  125. 125
    Kathleen says:

    @Brachiator: Gotta hand it to the PR firm for the classic “Black guys made us do it” defense.

  126. 126
    MCA1 says:

    @CatFacts: Stop it. We’re not doxxing people here. She’s not on twitter bullying people. Her son made an ass of himself and looked like an entitled, bigoted little shit and it went viral, but he didn’t murder someone. And even if he did, that’s not reason to make his mother’s life a living hell over it. I’m sure she hasn’t enjoyed the last 72 hours much as it is.

    The parents may or may not have their eyes opened by their son’s behavior here, and may or may not determine that the example they set had something to do with his participation in this. That’s up to them, though. We can think what we want about hiring a PR firm to rescue him from consequences he would otherwise face, and we can have differing opinions on whether or what those consequences should be, but ultimately this is their family. And we can express our feelings and anger about the incident, and throw shame in the direction of the kids here, and criticize the chaperones, etc. But you’re suggesting people actively attempt to interfere with a family member’s livelihood over this. No.

  127. 127
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Dorothy A. Winsor:

    Testosterone poisoning — they were forming a mob and feeding off each others’ energy. That’s why I keep wondering where the fuck the chaperones were and why they kept letting the boys get more and more amped up rather than trying to calm things down. It was super irresponsible of them.

  128. 128
    Kathleen says:

    @Elizabelle: They lied about Gore, Kerry, Obama and both Clintons. They will lie about Harris, Warren, Gillibrand, and any other woman and/or person of color who is a Democrat. They are a clear and present danger and should be reviled and mocked mercilessly.

  129. 129
    Elizabelle says:


    Gotta hand it to the PR firm for the classic “Black guys made us do it” defense.

    Good point! And about our sucky mediots too.

  130. 130
    Kathleen says:

    @The Midnight Lurker: I think it’s been going on a long time in the media. It’s just becoming more obvious now. But the subtext has always been there.

  131. 131
    JR says:

    Is the TODAY show going to rehabilitate the Stanford swim rapist next?

  132. 132
    Kathleen says:

    @Elizabelle: There are 3 No Ky counties which house Ft. Fascist – Boone, Kenton & Campbell. Cult Cath is in Kenton. A coworker has 2 children in Kenton County school district and said she got text saying all Kenton County schools were closed today, while the other 2 counties had weather related delayed start times. She said it could be because of the “threats”. Now I certainly do not advocate taking a death or bomb threat lightly. That being said, considering all of the Nazi loving PR/political liars engaged in this shit show I would not be surprised if a threat was either non existent or exaggerated. And of course local news was awash in mea culpas this morning. Too bad I couldn’t find a Criminal Minds rerun to lift my spirits.

  133. 133
    MCA1 says:

    @Betty Cracker: That’s sort of the crux of it. They either are not capable of admitting fault or wrongdoing, or have chosen to limit the entire range of acceptable behaviors in the face of disagreement to punch back, retaliate, deny, double down or project. Trumpism is, ultimately, the permission these sorts of people have been waiting for to scream “You’re not the boss of me!” at everyone they feel is a threat. Because that’s what their idol does, and it’s worked out OK for him so far. It’s a conscious throwing of the bird at a whole host of things, such as the value of empirical evidence, the weight of expertise and authority, empathy, acting like a dignified adult, humility, respect for others, shame, etc. Die roten Hüte are the physical manifestation of the whole ethos. Which is why my blood starts to boil when I see one of them, much less a bunch of them sported by smarmy high school d-bags.

    That’s a big part of the reason that, although I can sort of see the light at the end of the tunnel in terms of taking down Cheetolino himself, I still despair, deeply, over the corrosive forces he’s unleashed in our society.

  134. 134
    Salty Sam says:

    @Dorothy A. Winsor:

    When I look at the videos of those boys, I’d swear they were drunk. I assume they weren’t, but they show the same kind of uninhibited behavior.

    Per our blogfather’s comments during the Kavanaugh (SPIT) hearings, as a white middle class male of a certain age, I totally recognize the attitudes of the Covington punks. They ARE drunk, on race privilege, group numbers, and testosterone. The videos and screenshots of these kids made me cringe to remember the culture I grew up in. Although I would never have been as big a jerk as Sandman, I can see myself a half century ago gleefully dancing on the sidelines. It doesn’t make me proud.

    I sobered up somewhere along the way. I pray these kids do too, and would be happy for some really nasty consequences to be the “2X4 upside the head” that might do it.

    Unfortunately, our media continues to play the enabler.

  135. 135
    WaterGirl says:

    @Kathleen: @Dorothy A. Winsor: To me they look like they could be part of a lynch mob. Out of control. Scary. The expression on the face of the main kid, his entire demeanor, to me matches what you would see on the face of a kid who might have just killed the family cat. The same smug sneer the Kavanaugh has. To me it’s really creepy and repulsive.

  136. 136
    Kathleen says:

    @WaterGirl: It’s weird and creepy in a Damien Evil Seed type of way. My gut feel is something very evil is going on at that school. A lot of manipulation, abuse and blackmail. The bishop sounds like one of those old school abusive psycho control freak who hates everything but wielding total power. I don’t want to say it out loud but I hope you can read between the lines.

    ETA They looked almost disconnected, like robots executing tasks.

  137. 137
    Quiltingfool says:

    Money. This entire situation with these students isn’t about them – it’s about protecting the money pipeline to the school. Private schools are always needing outside funding, and I’ll bet the diocese/school are shitting their pants at the thought of losing that sweet, sweet corporate cash. Also, they may also worry about losing money support from the Church. Well, not sure about the Church part, not a Catholic, so I don’t fully understand the inner politics of the Church. Anyway, somebody is going to sniff out corporate support, and there may be fall out there – so the school made damn sure they got their story out quickly. I’ll bet the parents didn’t hire the PR firm, either. This is just a guess, btw. I’m as cynical as hell, and with these kind of people, money is wayyy more important than kids.

  138. 138
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Salty Sam:

    Most boys and young men usually get a (figurative) slap upside the head from life that makes them figure out they’re headed the wrong direction. Many of these kids will never get that figurative slap because their parents have insulated them from facing any consequences for their actions. A few of them will still get the slap because of random circumstances that cause accidents, illnesses, etc., but most of them will travel through life just as coddled and protected as they are now. That’s how you grow a crop of Kavanaughs.

  139. 139
    WaterGirl says:

    @Kathleen: I always wondered what happened to the baby from Rosemary’s baby, maybe this is him. (No, I am not serious.) But he’s certainly creepy enough for me to think of that book.

  140. 140
    Amir Khalid says:

    Xenophobia is hatred and/or fear of any outside group, not necessarily foreigners. In this case, it’s not about whose people were in America first.

  141. 141
    Salty Sam says:

    @Mnemosyne: Yup.

    I know “the moral arc of the universe is long”, but the polarization we are living in makes it feel imperative that we get past this crap quicker than we are. There was a time I was hopeful that we were headed in the right direction, but 11/9/16 was a major blow to that belief. And this situation with the Covington punks is EXACTLY the sort of thing I worried about on 11/10/16.

    I take comfort in watching my own kids, and their cohort, jump leaps and bounds ahead of my own progress (I humbly acknowledge when they point out my own age/class related blind spots). I only hope we (as a whole) get better quicker.

  142. 142
    Procopius says:

    @gene108: I’ll bet there was somebody wandering around Plymouth Colony with a sign saying, “Repent, The End Is Nigh.” And they were a bunch of religious crackpots.

  143. 143
    Nicole says:


    I always wondered what happened to the baby from Rosemary’s baby, maybe this is him.

    Ha! Ira Levin actually wrote a sequel, Son of Rosemary. Her and Satan’s son, Andy, got into… wait for it… politics.

  144. 144
    bjacques says:

    @Nicole: There was a movie “Look What’s Happened To Rosemary’s Baby” (1976), starring Stephen McHattie and Patty Duke. He’s basically aimless but trying to flee the coven and just live his life. I saw some of it on TV many years ago. The movie was kind of aimless too and I didn’t finish watching it.

  145. 145
    Interrobang says:

    Late to this thread but I want to point out that Scott Jennings, the guy who runs the PR firm that the Sandmanns hired, is a periodic commentator on CNN with Jake Tapper, and Jake Tapper was the guy who first picked up the whitewash, whereupon most of the rest of the media ran with it. And one of the Twitter accounts associated with making the original video is fake, allegedly from a liberal schoolteacher in California, but seems to be based in Brazil. So this stinks like Republican ratfucking all the way down, to me.

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