March For Life Apologizes For Quick Judgment On Covington Catholic Boys Situation

Neetu Chandak | Education and Politics Reporter

The March for Life apologized Monday for making a quick judgment on a social media video showing the encounter between the Covington Catholic High School boys and American Indian activist Nathan Phillips earlier in January.

An initial video made it seem like the boys were taunting Phillips, who was banging a drum and chanting a prayer after the March for Life in Washington, D.C., on Jan. 18. Many assumed Nick Sandmann, the student face-to-face with Phillips, was smirking and was disrespectful. A full, unedited version of the video, however, shows Phillips walked up to the boys. Sandmann also clarified in a statement he was trying to “diffuse the situation” and was not trying to be disrespectful.

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The March for Life said they initially made a statement once finding out about the video on Jan. 19, but retracted the statement Jan. 20 and waited for more information before making further comments. (RELATED: Apologies Roll In For Catholic School Protesters As Fuller Picture Of Events Emerges) 

“For our rush to judgment and initial statement based on incomplete and misleading information, we apologize,” the March for Life said in a statement Monday. “The facts that have since come to light reveal that the boys from Covington Catholic experienced some real and inexcusable intimidation, insults, and harassment.”

Covington Catholic High School was closed Tuesday over security concerns following the viral video. The boys, who wore Make America Great Again (MAGA) hats during the encounter, also received death threats.

“In the future, when it comes to the accuracy of breaking news reports or social media coverage of the March, we will not trust, we will verify,” the March for Life said.

Pro-life marchers rally at the Supreme Court during the 46th annual March for Life in Washington, U.S., January 18, 2019. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts

Pro-life marchers rally at the Supreme Court during the 46th annual March for Life in Washington, U.S., January 18, 2019. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts

The March for Life’s apology comes two days after Catholic Bishop Robert Foys apologized to Sandmann and the other boys.

Foys said the Covington Diocese was “bullied and pressured into making a statement prematurely.”

The March for Life was in its 46 years and promotes the pro-life agenda by standing against abortions, according to the statement.

The March for Life did not immediately respond to The Daily Caller News Foundation’s request for comment.

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