Pro-life groups asks FBI, DOJ to investigate calls for violence against Covington students
January 30, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) – The leaders of several Ohio-based pro-life groups gathered Tuesday to call on federal law enforcement agencies to investigate threats of violence made online against a group of Catholic high school students based on false reporting of a confrontation at the 2019 March for Life.
A group of students from Covington Catholic High School have found themselves in the middle of a firestorm since reports claimed a video showed them harassing elderly Native American veteran Nathan Phillips. But additional video and firsthand accounts soon revealed Phillips was the one who waded into the group and beat a drum inches from student Nick Sandmann’s face, and other adults who accompanied Phillips shouted racial taunts at the kids. The kids had been performing school cheers in an attempt to drown out the harassment.
Many journalists quickly retracted their initial reactions, which have fed a liberal fervor that has included death threats, yet some media outlets have attempted to keep the false narrative alive, and others have suggested journalists themselves are the real victims.
On Tuesday, representatives of Created Equal, Ohio Christian Alliance, Right to Life of Greater Cincinnati, and other pro-life groups gathered outside Fountain Square in Cincinnati to demand that the FBI and U.S. Department of Justice investigate the threats.
“The madness that followed the students from the encounter...put them at the center of a generated hate campaign, fueled by false media reports and social media,” Created Equal said in a press release. “Known individuals have called for violence against the students and their Christian school. This, in our opinion, is simply an outrage, and a watershed moment in which reason, sensibility, and the law must come into play.”
During the press conference, Created Equal president Mark Harrington contrasted the media outrage over the students with the “crickets” the press devotes every year to the documented harassment Created Equal receives when attending the left-wing, pro-abortion Women’s March.
“We kind of entered into a new normal. I hope this isn’t normal, but this kind of thing is beyond the pale,” he said. “I’m a civil libertarian; I believe that offensive speech, disturbing speech should be met with more speech, not less speech.” But death threats are “fighting words” and “not protected by the First Amendment,” he argued.
“It’s outrageous that we could do this to our young people…we need to take these threats seriously. Some people say, ‘oh you know, they were just blowing off steam, they don’t really mean it.’ When someone says they’re gonna burn down a high school or shoot somebody, we better take those seriously. Because a lot of times we don’t take these things seriously, and then what happens? Then we have a school shooting, and people wonder ‘did we catch the signs?’”
Created Equal has collected screenshots of several high-profile examples, such as CNN contributors Bakari Sellers and Reza Aslan expressing a desire to punch Nick Sandmann in the face, actor John DiMaggio suggesting death threats against the kids would be “well-deserved,” and hip-hop producer Michael “House Shoes” Buchanan asking fans to lock them in their school then burn it to the ground.
Sellers and Aslan, both prominent CNN contributors, threaten violence against the kids, and former CNN contributor Kathy Griffin callers them f****** and wants them doxed. Erik Abriss of Uproxx fantasizes about the kids and their families dying. (2/10) pic.twitter.com/UH2sHvU55N— Created Equal (@createdequalorg) January 25, 2019
Hollywood producer suggests putting the kids through a woodchipper, a country singer bribes people to attack them, an actor says they deserve the death threats, and a music producer calls them vile names and encourages his followers to shoot up the school and burn it down. (4/10) pic.twitter.com/vYjHZY5qHP— Created Equal (@createdequalorg) January 25, 2019
Ohio Christian Alliance/Christian Alliance of America president Chris Long, Fremont Baptist Temple Pastor Gary Click, Anglican priest Rev. James Tasker, Richfield Bible Baptist Church Pastor Alfred B. Davis, and other pro-lifers also signed a letter which has been delivered to the FBI, PJ Media reports.
“The FBI, in the recent past, has brought charges against and prosecuted individuals who have hurled similar threats against Congressional members,” the letter reminds them. The Trump administration has spoken out in defense of the Covington boys, but has yet to comment on whether such action will be taken.
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