Nicholas Sandmann and Nathan Phillips briefly become household names last January when a video clip was broadcast around the world as well as going viral online of a young white American schoolboy apparently “confronting” a native American Indian and it was widely seen by an iconic moment. It was interpreted as a display of nasty white Trump supporters being disrespectful, racist and menacing in the face of a dignified indigenous elder.
The reality was far from the edited clip beamed around the world by a biased media. There are several videos available online which show a broader context to the few seconds of broadcast showing a smirking teenage Sandmann standing in front of a chanting, drumming elder Phillips. It is clear that Sandmann was part of a group of boys from Covington Catholic High School, Kentucky, visiting Washington DC when the group was approached by Nathan Phillips and a handful of native American protestors who shouted that Europeans should go back home.
Sandmann was vilified by leftwing elements in American mass media as a dangerous racist and accused of abusing Phillips.
Yesterday saw a significant victory for common sense as it was reported that CNN has settled a multimillion-dollar lawsuit brought by Nick Sandmann.
CNN is the first to settle one of the $250 million lawsuits filed by Sandmann’s attorneys. The teen himself confirmed the news Tuesday with a brief tweet that read, “Yes, We settled with CNN.” The amount of the settlement has not yet been disclosed.
Following the discovery of evidence showing the nation’s leading news organizations got the story horribly, irrevocably wrong, Sandmann teamed up with attorneys, including Lin Wood of Richard Jewell fame, to punch back at the organizations that did not so much as hesitate to accuse him and the other Kentucky teens of violent bigotry.
CNN being the first of the newsrooms to end on terms favorable to Sandmann is likely just fine by the teen and his attorney.
“CNN was probably more vicious in its direct attacks on Nicholas than the Washington Post. And CNN goes into millions of individuals’ homes,” Wood said at the time the suit was first brought against the cable news network.
The lawsuit sought damages for the “emotional distress” Sandmann and his family suffered as a result of CNN’s coverage.
“They really went after Nicholas with the idea that he was part of a mob that was attacking the Black Hebrew Israelites, yelling racist slurs at the Black Hebrew Israelites. Totally false,” Wood said.
He added, “Now you say you’ve seen the tape; if you took the time to look at the full context of what happened that day, Nicholas Sandmann did absolutely nothing wrong. He was, as I’ve said to others, he was the only adult in the room. But you have a situation where CNN couldn’t resist the idea that here’s a guy with a young boy, that Make America Great Again cap on. So, they go after him.”
Wood also announced this week that they intend to sue Gannett within 60 days.