Actress and devout Catholic, Patricia Heaton, weighed in on the controversy that lit up the internet over the weekend after news outlets large and small broadcast video of a group of teen boys from a Catholic school in Kentucky harassing a Native American activist, Nathan Phillips. Except as more information came to light, a reticent media had to walk back the original narrative. That the media attacked the kids first and asked questions later piqued the “Everybody Loves Raymond” and “The Middle” star’s ire and she took to Twitter to blast the journalists who did so.
1. I'm seeing what I believe to be sincere apologies from some journalists and verified media persons regarding their lack of professionalism in rushing to judgement re the #CovingtonCatholic situation.
— Patricia Heaton (@PatriciaHeaton) January 21, 2019
“I’m seeing what I believe to be sincere apologies from some journalists and verified media persons regarding their lack of professionalism in rushing to judgement [sic] re the
#CovingtonCatholic situation,” Heaton began.
Patricia Heaton starred on “Everybody Loves Raymond” from 1996 to 2005.
In true Christian fashion, Heaton appreciated the apologies, but continued:
“These apologies are welcome and necessary, but they don’t address the damage that cannot be undone which was inflicted upon young people who are about to embark on adulthood – applying to colleges, looking for employment, etc.”
Heaton cuts straight to the chase about what is really at stake when the media decides to run with a story without verifying facts about the situation. Instead of seeking to understand the chain of events, they promoted their own narrative and biases about anyone in a “Make America Great Again” hat. These kids have their entire futures ahead of them and this could have grave effects.
“These young people will forever have these smears follow them through their life every time they proffer their resume with the word “Covington” on it. It will also affect anyone who ever has or ever will attend that school. The damage is incalculable.”
After being threatened with a protest in front of the school, Covington Christian School canceled classes Tuesday to ensure the safety of its students.
Journalists and pilers-on on social media need to realize that they have the power to destroy lives with lies. That no journalist or outlet that ran with the original narrative has or seemingly will face consequences from the entire episode makes it difficult to think any real lesson will be learned from this.
As one friend of mine commented on Facebook this weekend, “You will never regret not joining an internet lynch mob.”