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Op-Ed: Don’t be a bystander

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Op-Ed: Don’t be a bystander

Nathan Phillips (right) and Nick Sandmann (left)

Nathan Phillips (right) and Nick Sandmann (left)

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Nathan Phillips (right) and Nick Sandmann (left)

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Nathan Phillips (right) and Nick Sandmann (left)

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All views and opinions expressed in outside op-eds are those of the author and do not reflect the beliefs of Etched in Stone or its staff. If you would like to respond or continue the discussion, we invite you to submit your own op-ed here.

On December 24, 1865 confederate veteran Nathan Bedford Forrest along with five other veterans gathered in Pulaski Tennessee and formed a group that was built on the goals of using fear mongering and violence in an attempt to intimidate and keep the Republican party in check as well as carry out religiously and ethnically charged attacks against African Americans, Jews, Immigrants, and even Catholics. This group was known as the Ku Klux Klan or, as it’s more commonly known, the KKK.

While, often forgotten, Catholics in America faced discrimination not so long ago. In the 20th century at the height of the KKK’s influence, having accumulated nearly 4 million members nationwide, an outspoken anti-catholic KKK member by the name of Hugo Black was able to secure a spot on the US Senate and subsequently the Supreme Court. At this time anti-catholicism had become one of the main talking points of the Klan’s white supremacist agenda. It wasn’t until around 1961 when John F Kennedy, the first catholic president, took office that the rampant and violent anti-catholic sentiment died down. Although, even President Kennedy wasn’t free from prejudice with many claiming that he was simply a pawn for the Pope.

Today such hatred for Catholics seems like an absurd impossibility, although one may have also said that about discrimination towards the Jewish community up until recently. However, according to Pew Research center antisemitism has risen significantly in the 21st century, with Britain reaching a record level of antisemitism, at a staggering 1,000 recorded anti-semitic incidents occurring in 2014 alone.*

America is certainly not innocent of this crime either with controversy sparking over the alleged anti semitism that has accompanied the Women’s March as experience by Ms. Wurble who recounted her experience with the New York Times.**

More recently a new story has garnered the attention of the Media, one of so called racial discrimination against indigenous groups. Originating from a 30 second video on Buzzfeed, in which a young boy in a a MAGA hat smiled at an indigenous man as he beat his drum, the story sparked mass outrage. People, from ordinary citizens to politicians and celebrities, crawled out from the darkest corners of the Twitter to self righteously tweet out against what they viewed as a clear indicator of “racism” and “white supremacy.” At alarming rates the internet made their verdict deciding that these boys who had clearly been smiling maliciously at the indigenous man- something eerily reminiscent of George Orwell’s term of FaceCrime- and began an onslaught of vicious texts, inciting violence, doxxing, and demanding to know the identities of each boy who had been present.

The indigenous man, later identified as Nathan Phillips told major news outlets that he had been surrounded and was scared as the boys surrounded him, however, but a few hours later a new longer video surfaced revealing that that had been rather far from the truth. This video depicted the group of boys who attend Covington Catholic to be waiting for transport to the March for Life, a protest against abortion, when they were verbally abused by several black Israelites. Names flung at them included, “Future School Shooters”, “incest babies”, and “crackers.” Through this video it also became abundantly clear that unlike Phillip’s had claimed,

these boys had not in fact surrounded him. Adversely he had approached them intentionally banging his drum near the face of a boy who was later identified as Nick Sandmann.

The media at large decided to ignore this evidence and rather than retract there prior statements began to search for and create supposedly incriminating evidence against them, going as far as to find a photo from 2008 in which Covington Catholic youth doused themselves in black paint and wore black clothing to a basketball in which the theme was a blackout under the premise that it was “black face” and that they were “ridiculing” African American players. Shortly after another video emerged in which a Covington Catholic student told a girl that “it’s not rape if you enjoy it,” only, that boy wasn’t from Covington Catholic as another boy exclaims only seconds later in a section that was initially edited out.

As for poor Nathan Phillips who had been so victimized by these boys? Turns out he is well known for instigating conflicts and that this confrontation with the Covington Catholic boys may have been an intentional attempt to vilify Catholics. A point further supported by the news that only a day after his interaction with the Covington Catholic boys he had gathered 600 protesters to infiltrate mass, one of Catholicism’s most sacred rituals, at DC’s Basilica and National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception a prominent Roman Catholic Church in the District of Columbia and demanded reparations from Catholics who he felt had historically oppressed Natives. His stunt was so disruptive that security had to intervene.

Despite these facts, the media has been relentless in its attacks against the Covington boys, trying to push blame on them because they happened to be white, male, and donning MAGA hats. Actions that are all constitutionally protected under the first amendment. Ignoring facts, the media continues to employ bullying tactics, endorsing violence against these boys and making them fear for their lives in a way that is deeply reminiscent of those that the KKK used in the 1920s. As children we are told that we should never ever stand by and watch a bully attack someone. That we should say something because being a bystander is just as bad as being a bully. That is no different here, when the media bullies minors for crimes they did not commit one cannot stay silent. It is the silent majority that allows hate to rise, toady just as much as it was when the KKK terrorized religious and ethnic groups from the reconstruction to the 1920s. Bullies take many forms, from a mean kid at school, to massive organizations like the Nazi party, to domestic terrorists such as the KKK, groups that were all allowed to flourish because people chose to be bystanders instead of speaking out. This is the same, only now they have traded their white robes in for ones of “tolerance” and the ever sacred minority status. It’s our choice whether we let them rise, it’s our choice whether we allow this discrimination. A choice we make when we decide whether we will be a bystander or speak out. I’ve made my choice, have you?

Sources

(http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2015/02/09/europes-jewish-population/) (https://www.nytimes.com/2018/12/23/us/womens-march-anti-semitism.html) https://www.catholicnewsagency.com/news/nathan-phillips-rally-attempted-to-disrupt-mass-at-d cs-national-shrine-91038

https://www.history.com/topics/reconstruction/ku-klux-klan https://www.ncronline.org/news/people/modern-hates-anti-catholic-roots https://reimaginingmigration.org/american-anti-catholicism-in-the-1920s/ https://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/sep/12/america-history-of-hating-catholics https://www.buzzfeednews.com/article/juliareinstein/teens-taunted-native-american-elder-indige nous-peoples-march https://www.cnn.com/2019/01/21/us/nathan-phillips-maga-teens-interview/index.html https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QwNyOD8FIQk https://www.snopes.com/fact-check/covington-catholic-black-paint/

12 Comments

12 Responses to “Op-Ed: Don’t be a bystander”

  1. Donald J. Trump on February 1st, 2019 8:10 am

    This and the wall article may have been the only ones with truth in them that doesn’t point out a ridiculous view point. I approve!

  2. JJ on February 1st, 2019 9:34 am

    This article is very very well done. Research was done. Truth was spoken. It was inspiring. One of the few articles on here that I can say any of that about. great job.

  3. Payton Lee on February 1st, 2019 9:44 am

    Oh boy. Hannah. Come on now. Lets talk.

    Firstly, the clip that was shown wasn’t just an out-of-context 30 second Buzzfeed blip. There is an entire video showing the Catholic boys mocking the Native American. This whole “omg us Judeo-Christian-Catholics are the *real* victims” shtick is entirely pathetic. Now lets look at this sentence you wrote, probably the worst one in the entire article:

    >This is the same, only now they have traded their white robes in for ones of “tolerance” and the ever sacred minority status.

    What you have said here, is, as far as I can tell: “minorities and tolerant liberals are literally the same as the KKK.” HANNAH. NO. MY LORD. The Catholic boys are not hated because they are Catholic, they are hated because they are little pieces of human garbage with obnoxious smirks. The mother of Nick Sandmann? She blamed his harassment of the Native American man on “Black Muslims” (they were black Israelites). The Covington boys chanted “Build the Wall” at both the Native American man and the Israelites, all of whom were American citizens– proving fairly definitively, in at the Covington boys’ usage of the phrase, that “Build the Wall” is not just a take on immigration; it is a stance of white supremacy.

    Also, my comment would not be complete without taking a second to laugh at how little you know about George Orwell’s politics. Right-wingers and capitalists absolutely love citing quips from 1984 and Animal Farm to prove how the most privileged people in America are the “real victims” because of “reverse discrimination” or whatever. Here’s what you had to say:

    >At alarming rates the internet made their verdict deciding that these boys who had clearly been smiling maliciously at the indigenous man- something eerily reminiscent of George Orwell’s term of FaceCrime

    George Orwell’s idea of Facecrime is that showing certain facial expressions can be considered dangerous by the ruling class. The RULING CLASS. Who would you say holds more power? A native American man peacefully protesting, or an entire hoard of private school kids mocking his protest? The actions of the Covington boys are exactly the same sentiment as “All Lives Matter”. It is not a true stance, it is just a reactionary take to a protest. Instead of agreeing that Black Lives do in fact Matter, the enlightened-center crowd will proudly point out “but All Lives Matter!”, distracting from the issue at hand in a tactic known as Concern Trolling.

    Okay, back to George Orwell. As nobody is taught in the American school system, Orwell was an avid anarcho-communist and traveled to Spain during their Syndicalist Civil War to fight alongside fellow socialists. George Orwell is almost guaranteed to have held intersectionality politics, or the knowledge that different points of oppression in society create unique experiences of that oppression. Or, as you would say, “the ever sacred minority status”. When you are used to privilege, equality feels like oppression, no?

    In conclusion, this article is a bunch of reactionary garbage and a face for a scrambled attempt to protect the image of Catholicism that nobody asked for. You reference JFK, talking about how oppressed he was as a catholic, and, in turn, you must oppressed too, right? You and your “sacred minority status”? Are you not going to address other, objectively more problematic issues of the past, like, say, slavery? The genocide of Native Americans?

    You’re not *actually* speaking out against anything here. All you’re doing is whining about the fact that minorities have the same free speech and protest rights that Abrahamic White people do. You’re only “speaking up” for the status quo, and anything that ISNT the status quo of white America? Well that must be 1984-style totalitarianism! You think the 1920’s were bad for Catholics? Well you’re right, in some ways they were. But try being Native American or black. Or, you know, a “black Muslim”. Lord.

    This is the most “both sides are bad” thing I’ve seen all year. Except, obviously, you think the left is worse, and the equivalent to the KKK. Are we going to talk about the white supremacist and far-right attacks that happen almost every week nowadays? Those evil tolerant minorities aren’t the ones doing the shootings. Just. Ugh. Delete this.

  4. Thade W George on February 1st, 2019 12:30 pm

    Oh no its Payton again. Also, oh no, its me.

    Lets start with some dumb quotes, since you have a decent amount of those.

    “in at the Covington boys’ usage of the phrase, that “Build the Wall” is not just a take on immigration; it is a stance of white supremacy.”

    Okay what? How is building a wall white supremacy? The Chinese built one and it was a failure, but they are not white. There is a wall in Jerusalem, those people are middle eastern and they have a wall. Is defending yourself and not letting people you dont know a white person only thing now? You seem like the only white supremacist, even though its funny how you hate white people. If a African American or Hispanic built a wall or fence, or locked there doors would it not be okay?

    “The RULING CLASS. Who would you say holds more power? A native American man peacefully protesting, or an entire hoard of private school kids mocking his protest?”

    The native american wasn’t peacefully protesting, he literally walked into the croud, targeted a white kid with a MAGA hat and started beating his loud, and frankly annoying, drum in his face while chanting. Thats just a stupid move. What did the man think he was doing? Standing up against the devil? These kids were our age and they were being harassed by racist black men (I only say it, because I have heard only white people can be racist, even though the Black Israelites called the kid crackers, ect) taunting them, then this random dude walks up and starts beating a drum in the kids face. If I was involved I would have not been as patient, so I praise the kid for keeping cool. Also, they kid is a pretty good smirker.

    “In conclusion, this article is a bunch of reactionary garbage and a face for a scrambled attempt to protect the image of Catholicism that nobody asked for. You reference JFK, talking about how oppressed he was as a catholic, and, in turn, you must oppressed too, right? You and your “sacred minority status”? Are you not going to address other, objectively more problematic issues of the past, like, say, slavery? The genocide of Native Americans?”

    I think more of the problem that the media hated is that they were white and pro trump, I agree it probably wasn’t a direct attack on Catholics. Also, why do we need to bring up and argue about the events of the past when they happened hundreds of years ago and I would argue they have no affect now. Yes, white people have done some bad stuff in the past, but so has every other race on the planet. Humans are violent.

    This is the most “both sides are bad” thing I’ve seen all year. Except, obviously, you think the left is worse, and the equivalent to the KKK. Are we going to talk about the white supremacist and far-right attacks that happen almost every week nowadays? Those evil tolerant minorities aren’t the ones doing the shootings. Just. Ugh. Delete this.

    Your articles are bad too, go away!

  5. Anonymous on February 1st, 2019 1:56 pm

    “Those evil tolerant minorities aren’t the ones doing the shootings.”
    You are actually blatantly racist. (+insane)

  6. Anonymous on February 1st, 2019 3:46 pm

    @Payton Lee she wasn’t calling Minorities the KKK she was saying both him and the KKK and media were bullies. Her focus on the discrimination of Catholics was to debunk the stereotype that they some how are “privledged” or have “power” something clearly missed on you. I have to ask, are you really like this in real life or are you just trolling cause you’re bored?

  7. Hello on February 2nd, 2019 6:29 pm

    Payton Lee good job!!! You sure roasted those people, white supremacy is a huge problem in america

    JK. My name is Thade, and who ever is in charge of this is not a huge fan of free speech, because I have two comments on here that did not get into the comments section. If you are reading this and dont plan on publishing it, sup, and if this did get published, talk about how good this article is. I am glad to see there are a few people in this school who think instead of using their feelings. Talk about voices getting suppressed, maybe its not the minorities that can talk around here 😛

  8. [email protected] on February 2nd, 2019 7:38 pm

    Excuse me Ms. Lee, I do believe you are lost. Thank God this article was written, if only for the point of showing that not all minorities are perfect beings. I can confirm that under US Law, all people, minority or not, are subject to the same process as everyone else. The very notion that you have some form of issue with the fact that this article was even written is infantile and uneducated. There was no genocide of the Native Americans. Genocide is the systematic murder of a large group of people, usually of a particular ethnic group. While the innumerable deaths seen in the relocation of Native Americans are sicking, they do not give Mr. Phillips an excuse to act despicably around people (especially minors).

    Now, please do correct me if I’m wrong (I really would like to be corrected), but do you know any of those boys personally? I just wanted to know, as you seemed to know them so well, calling them ” . . . little pieces of human garbage . . . ” and implying much worse. Would you say that if they were girls? You will probably write a comment when you get back from the women’s march saying, “Of course I would call them out if they were girls,” or, “You sexist pig!!” But we both know that deep down inside, you really hate them because they are white, Republican men who are also Christian. That basically checks off every box on your hate list!! You only accept people who share your opinion you Liberal fruitcake.

    I would really love to talk more sometime, but I cant waste any more time on you today. Sorry Payton!!

    Your’s truly,
    [email protected]

  9. cmon on February 3rd, 2019 7:36 pm

    Let me be the first to extend my sincere apologies that you, a white conservative Catholic, are so incredibly discriminated against in this society by those bully minorities, and that you were so obviously the largest group that were targeted by the KKK, and that you struggle so much to preserve your way of life in today’s society. I’m so sorry that these minorities that struggle to have basic human rights are so prejudiced against you, and that your demographic is so incredibly targeted always in the media. I am so sorry that this singular incident may have been skewed by the media, when your group is so used to getting their way in these very same situations, even when they shouldn’t. I am so sorry that your religion’s schools have their teenage boys, who they send to anti-abortion rallies during the school day, subsequently become the subject of such controversy. I am so sorry that your minority took so incredibly long to have a president, especially when compared to these natives that the media is for once jumping to defend. They got their first representation in the White House, like, when? Never? What an injustice against Catholics. I’m so sorry that these poor boys were bullied by those gosh darn liberals and minorities. Let me apologize once again for your demographic’s oppression and small representation within the government. You only have 5 supreme court justices, only 4 of which are white. I’m so sorry you only make up one fifth of the population and 5/9ths of that high court. That’s so unfair, I can’t even believe it. I am so sorry that you have 104 members of the house of representatives, especially when those darned natives have 4! They’re 2 percent of the population and have 1 percent of the representation in the House!!! You are 20% and make up almost a quarter. Your life must be so rough with so much oppression and having only the second highest ranking member of the Executive branch a part of your religion. I don’t know how you survive so much hatred. Let me be the first to extend my sincere sympathy.

    (serious note: grow up.)

    https://www.cnn.com/2018/07/10/politics/catholic-justices/index.html
    https://civil.services/us-house/list/roman-catholic-representatives
    https://civil.services/us-house/list/native-american-representatives
    https://www.census.gov/newsroom/facts-for-features/2014/cb14-ff26.html

  10. I wrote wall op-ed on February 3rd, 2019 9:09 pm

    Good read, I can tell this article was very well thought out and has a lot of good points in it. Also I don’t know who this payton person is, I don’t wanna assume your gender but I really have no clue if your a male or female. Stop bashing on other people articles, your wasting your time just to be laughed at. Anyway good article I actually learned quite a bit, thank you.

  11. Payton Lee on February 4th, 2019 10:14 am

    @ “[email protected]” and [the guy with the very super duper cool Halo avatar]. You really got me. I definitely would defend racism if it came from a woman, even though this entire article is just racism coming from a woman.

    I’m not myself a liberal, but you all should keep absolutely slam-dunking on the libs, fruitcakes and snowflakes. You’ve changed my mind and I have now come to the conclusion that gamers are actually the most oppressed minority in America. You Chads really beat me. I have lost all of my morale to keep fighting the War on Christmas 🙁

    Okay SERIOUS remark.

    Making “white people are dumb lol” jokes on twitter is not comparable to the terrorism and hundreds, if not thousands of murderers that the KKK has carried out. Comparing the two is frankly downplaying and apologizing for the actions of white supremacists.

    Also… here:
    https://shareblue.com/extremist-murders-2018-right-wing-terrorism/

  12. Thade W George on February 5th, 2019 9:01 am

    ” [the guy with the very super duper cool Halo avatar]”

    Thanks but it is not Halo XD yeet.

    “Making “white people are dumb lol” jokes on twitter is not comparable to the terrorism and hundreds, if not thousands of murderers that the KKK has carried out. Comparing the two is frankly downplaying and apologizing for the actions of white supremacists.”

    I dont think she was comparing, but maybe giving a example. I agree, KKK did terrible stuff, she wasn’t defending them either. No one in america is oppressed anymore. Social Racism is gone, it is not implemented in the government. I mean, people are being elected now just because of their minority status it seems. CNN doesn’t want to talk about how smart these people are, what their policies are, ect, just about their race, gender, religion, sexual orientation, ect. Shouldn’t we be judging by the content of their character not their race or creed?

    Anyway, oppression by the american government is not around anymore, we are less racist then we ever were. Just because there are racist people, does not mean the people are racist. Now, saying you are oppressed just seems like a emotional safety net. There are bigger problems now. The drug overdose crisis, mental health, abortion, immigration, ect. Throwing racism in the mix as a government involved problem is just a waste of thinking power.

Slander or profanity, even if abbreviated, will not be approved.

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Op-Ed: Don’t be a bystander