- Progressive Twitter users raged over the “Today” show’s airing of Savannah Guthrie’s interview with Covington Catholic High School student Nick Sandmann, arguing that it was unfair and immoral to give the maligned child a platform to speak.
- Activists like Amy Siskind demanded a boycott of Guthrie and NBC’s “Today” show over the interview, which they claimed was a staged attempt to make Sandmann look innocent, despite the fact that video evidence shows that Sandmann was in fact innocent and did not approach Nathan Phillips or mock him.
- Some supporters of the Covington boys also took issue with the interview and said that Guthrie’s questions implied that Sandmann and his peers were at fault for the confrontation with Phillips, when in reality Phillips was responsible for the entire confrontation and lied about it.
Progressive Twitter users slammed journalist Savannah Guthrie’s interview with Covington Catholic High School student Nick Sandmann Wednesday and were outraged over her giving the teen a platform to speak.
Members of the media, activists, authors and other prominent accounts on Twitter accused Guthrie of staging the interview and urged others to boycott her and NBC’s “Today” show — an effort spearheaded by The New Agenda founder Amy Siskind.
They also accused Guthrie of working in concert with the Sandmann family’s crisis management team, hired after social media users barraged the Kentucky student with death threats, to contrive an innocent appearance for Sandmann, despite video evidence proving that neither he nor his classmates behaved as racist aggressors in their confrontation with Native American activist Nathan Phillips and black supremacists. (RELATED: Los Angeles Bishop Decries ‘Literally Satanic’ Social Media Backlash Against Covington Boys)
— Amy Siskind ????️???? (@Amy_Siskind) January 22, 2019
— Amy Siskind ????️???? (@Amy_Siskind) January 22, 2019
This Savannah Guthrie interview with the Covington kid is aggressively staged. He’s been styled to look like a 13-year-old and coached to talk like a 45-year-old crisis manager. #QueenCity #MitchMcConnell pic.twitter.com/S8pvi79aCR
— David Hiltbrand (@DaveOnDemand_TV) January 23, 2019
When Guthrie asked if he felt there was anything for which he should apologize, Sandmann asserted that he had a right to stand in front of the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C., and did not need to apologize for merely smiling and listening to Phillips.
Sandmann did say, however, that he wished he and his friends had walked away or waited for their bus somewhere else. Catholic leaders, media outlets and social media users publicly condemned Sandmann and his peers as bigots after a short excerpt of hours of video of their Jan. 18 encounter with Phillips went viral.
Longer videos of the encounter showed that Phillips actually approached the students, contrary to his earlier statements, after Black Hebrew Israelites began shouting racial epithets and profanities at the boys. The boys responded with school cheers to drown out the vulgarities but did not, as Phillips asserted, hurl racist insults at Native Americans or chant “build the wall.”
Many Twitter users, however, maintain that Sandmann and his peers are guilty of white privilege and bigotry, despite proof of their innocence. The fact that Guthrie gave Sandmann a chance to publicly respond to their accusations only enraged critics of the Covington students further.
How dare the Today Show give this racist little shit a platform like this? Target the show’s advertisers until Savannah Guthrie and the producers behind this stunt are fired. https://t.co/MLVlCPmoWL
— Palmer Report (@PalmerReport) January 23, 2019
SAVANNAH GUTHRIE: Do you feel from this experience that you owe anybody an apology?
MAGA KID: pic.twitter.com/12nx6mR66a
— brian abrams (@BrianAbrams) January 23, 2019
8. For them it is just the same to legitimize some smirking teenager in a MAGA hat, because the only criterion is ratings.
— Laura Moser (@lcmoser) January 23, 2019
Nick Sandmann’s responses to Savannah Guthrie are as deeply unsatisfying to me as I’m sure they are supported by folks who feel he did nothing wrong.
— Jonathan Capehart (@CapehartJ) January 23, 2019
I absolutely will not spend my morning looking at Savannah Guthrie as she let’s this racist teen pretend he isn’t a bad person when he was attending a March For Life rally in a MAGA hat and you shouldn’t either.
— Phillip Henry (@MajorPhilebrity) January 23, 2019
for the record, I don’t know about you – but my mom would have locked me in my room, told me to think about what I had done for a GOOD LONG TIME and come down only when I could explain what I had learned. Trip to NBC would not have been included. https://t.co/tvyAR4pwAj
— alyssa “vajamboree 2020” mastromonaco (@AlyssaMastro44) January 22, 2019
Yep, I am a mom who is raising her son right.
I am also smart enough to see though PR b-shit. Apparently you can’t say the same. https://t.co/49QMjtIpVa
— Amy Siskind ????️???? (@Amy_Siskind) January 23, 2019
Progressive activists like Bishop Talbert Swan took the accusations of bigotry further, arguing that it was somehow unfair to give Sandmann an interview in light of the hostile treatment of black youths implicated in or charged with crimes.
My challenge with this interview @TODAY is that we don’t give all “misunderstood” people this national platform. Many many black boys are presumed guilty and handled accordingly. I see “privilege” here and that bothers me. @Amy_Siskind I agree with you and @TalbertSwan on this! https://t.co/wdHCHZ2gej
— Sophia A. Nelson (@IAmSophiaNelson) January 22, 2019
Please send me the link to the shows where you sat down with the parents of #LaquanMcDonald, #TamirRice, #TrayvonMartin, and a host of other innocent Black boys who were killed & had their reputations smeared by bigoted wypipo to justify their murders.https://t.co/UrjCdPNWpi
— Bishop Talbert Swan (@TalbertSwan) January 22, 2019
Guthrie’s voice drips with white-on-white empathy. His with white smugness still. https://t.co/Ht7trdOJeW
— Jeff Jarvis (@jeffjarvis) January 22, 2019
Several prominent Twitter users who support the Covington boys also took issue with Guthrie’s phrasing of her interview questions to Sandmann, saying that she implicated that Sandmann and his peers were at fault for the incident.
“Do you feel from this experience that you owe anybody an apology? Do you see your own fault in any way?” Guthrie asked.
“Apologize for WHAT!?!?!” Larry O’Connor, associate editor of The Washington Times, tweeted in response.
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