The particulars, this time, are that a group of students from Kentucky’s Covington Catholic High School attending–surely under supervision from the school–the March for Life Rally in Washington DC were recorded at the Lincoln Memorial confronting Nathan Phillips, who was present for the coinciding Indigenous People’s March.
Watch this video.
One report from the local Fox station says, “The young man’s intent is unclear.”
It isn’t unclear. We know this face. The intent of that cold stare and hard smile are obvious: to intimidate, dismay, mock, disrupt, and disturb an old man. That face has been a useful tool of the people who seek to cause fear to those whom they dislike. In the particulars of prior versions, this is the face of the people who screamed at the schoolchildren in Little Rock. This is the face of the louts who dumped sodas on the people at the lunch counter in Greensboro. This is the face of Lawrence Rainey and Cecil Ray Price on trial for murder.
The boys watching this young man understand the intent. They surround this man, mock him, and do all they can to frighten him. They’re enjoying a moment of thrilling fearless cruelty. It goes on and on.
This never went away. It was never expunged from the culture. These boys are its proud heirs, and they know it.
Covington Catholic High School’s motto is Building Minds. Living Faith. Their phones and social media are offline for the moment as the school leaders handle the embarrassment of a seeming breach, or perhaps an equally embarrassing convergence, between this spontaneous behavior by their own, and their “over-riding mission…to assist parents and families in forming a Catholic identity within the students that God has entrusted to us.”
The particulars this time aren’t as important as the pattern over time. Covington would profit from taking a history lesson instead of being one.
Watch the video. We know this face.