One of the younger conservative figures in the country’s culture war made his national debut on Tuesday night at the Republican National Convention.
Nick Sandmann, 18, addressed attendees at the Lincoln Memorial, where he recalled his treatment from various media outlets following his encounter on a high school field trip to Washington, D.C., with Native American activist Nathan Phillips.
“Looking back now, how could I possibly have imagined that the simple act of putting on that red hat would unleash the hate from the Left and make myself the target of network and cable news networks, nationwide?” Sandmann said.
The 2019 incident was caught on videotape and quickly became a Rorschach test for both liberals and conservatives. Those on the Right saw a young person smeared by the media simply because he was donning a “Make America Great Again” hat, while others saw a bigoted supporter of the president mocking a minority veteran.
“Canceled is what’s happening to people around this country who refuse to be silenced by the far-left. Many are being fired, humiliated, or even threatened. Often, the media is a willing participant,” Sandmann said. “But I wouldn’t be canceled. I fought back hard to expose the media for what they did to me and won a personal victory. While much more must be done, I look forward to the day that the media returns to providing balanced, responsible, and accountable news coverage.”
Some media figures who initially condemned Sandmann’s conduct later recanted after learning more about the incident, which now many believe was provoked by a group of Black Israelites, an extremist anti-Semitic religious movement. Initial reports alleging that Sandmann and his fellow Covington Catholic High School students lobbed racial slurs at Phillips were also deemed incorrect.
But Sandmann’s defenders say the media jumped the gun on its blame of the then-17-year-old. Quickly after the video went viral, Sandmann hired an attorney and sued outlets such as CNN, the Washington Post, and the New York Times for hundreds of millions of dollars.
In July, the Washington Post, after it published a series of corrections on its initial report, settled with Sandmann for an undisclosed sum.
“We are pleased that we have been able to reach a mutually agreeable resolution of the remaining claims in this lawsuit,” a spokesperson for the paper told the Washington Examiner.
Author: Joseph Simonson
Source: Washington Examiner: Nick Sandmann warns of media-driven cancel culture in Republican convention address