The mother of a Catholic schoolboy who joined a boorish mob of classmates and taunted a Native American man during the Indigenous Peoples March in Washington, DC on Saturday, blames ‘Black Muslims’ for his racist behavior.
Let’s just call this one #BeingBlamedWhileBlack.
A disturbing video of the confrontation has caused outrage online after the group of antagonistic white teens wearing MAGA hats made fun of the Native American man who was also a military vet, causing widespread criticism of the youths.
One boy in particular on the video has become face of hate looking smug as he stared down the elder of Nebraska’s Omaha tribe as he beat on his drum and chanted. The man has been identified as 64-year-old Nathan Phillips, an indigenous activist who fought in the Vietnam War.
According to Yahoo, the boy’s mother said Black Muslims had been harassing the schoolboys who attend a private, all-male Covington Catholic High School in Kentucky.
Not sure how someone else could make the child she raised act racist, but she tried to explain in an email to heavy.com: “Did you hear the names of the people were calling these boys? It was shameful. Did you witness the black Muslims yelling profanities and video taping to get something to further your narrative of hatred??
“Did you know that this ‘man’ came up to this one boy and drummed in his face?”
The boys who are staunch Trump supporters were attending an anti-abortion March for Life rally on Friday. Their prejudiced behavior aligns with that of the President.
Another video of the confrontation showed an assembly of Black men standing near the scene and arguing with the MAGA-hat hating mob. They quoted Bible scriptures.
Phillips is seen on the disturbing video trying to keep focus as a crowd of students behind him, mock and try to intimidate him. The smug-face student stares him down just inches away with a smirk on his face. The disrespectful face-off upset many online.
Actress and activist Alyssa Milano tweeted that the footage “brought me to tears.”
Actor Chris Evans said the students’ actions were “appalling” and “shameful”.
“This is appalling. The ignorance. The gall. The disrespect. It’s shameful. And sadly on brand. When something like this isnt even surprising, it’s evidence to our place in the cycle of recreating our darker chapters. That Native American man showed incredible strength and dignity.”
This is appalling. The ignorance. The gall. The disrespect. It’s shameful. And sadly on brand. When something like this isnt even surprising, it’s evidence to our place in the cycle of recreating our darker chapters. That Native American man showed incredible strength and dignity https://t.co/Im4KLw3sV7
— Chris Evans (@ChrisEvans) January 19, 2019
Democratic congresswoman Deb Haaland who is a member of New Mexico’s Laguna Pueblo tribe, tweeted that students exhibited “blatant hate, disrespect, and intolerance.”
Ruth Buffalo, a North Dakota state lawmaker and member of the Mandan, Hidatsa and Arikara Nation tribe, said she was dismayed by the students’ behavior toward the military vet.
“The behavior shown in that video is just a snapshot of what indigenous people have faced and are continuing to face,” said Buffalo.
The Catholic high school and the Diocese of Covington have apologized in a statement and promised action, including the possibility of expelling students.
“We extend our deepest apologies to Mr Phillips. This behavior is opposed to the church’s teachings on the dignity and respect of the human person.
“The matter is being investigated and we will take appropriate action, up to and including expulsion,” the statement said.
Because of the outcry, the Catholic high school has closed its Facebook page.
Standing your ground
Phillips, stood strong in the face of oppression as the Catholic schoolboys heckled him.
“It was getting ugly, and I was thinking: ‘I’ve got to find myself an exit out of this situation and finish my song at the Lincoln Memorial,’” Phillips said. “I started going that way, and that guy in the hat stood in my way and we were at an impasse.”
“When I was there singing, I heard them saying, ‘Build that wall, build that wall,’” Mr Phillips said, as he wiped away tears in a video later posted on Instagram. “This is indigenous lands. We’re not supposed to have walls here. We never did.”