Over the past few days, the right-wing media has embarked on a disgusting whitewashing campaign to excuse and coddle the kids of Covington Catholic high school, who were caught on video harassing an elderly Native American man with racist war whoops and tomahawk chops and harassing women by yelling misogynistic jeers at them.
Appalled at the thought of white kids having to face the consequences for their actions, the conservative echo chamber and the PR firm hired by the kids’ family kicked into high gear and immediately began spitting out a slew of pieces that first attempted to distort the sequence of events (with a little help from both-sides civility weenies like Jake Tapper) and then immediately segued into apologia for what they did and decrying the “liberal mob” who were intent on destroying the lives of those kids for their “harmless fun.”
While social media may have erred in singling out the now notorious Smirking Hat Kid, now identified as Nicholas Sandmann, for their wrath when the entire herd of chudlets deserves to be dragged over the coals for their appalling behavior, the lengths that the right-wing is going to exonerate them entirely is beyond belief.
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During today’s episode of FOX News show “The Five,” a host compared the judging of the kids for wearing Trump’s Make America Great Again hats…to judging a rape victim’s outfit.
Fox hosts compare judging MAGA hats to judging a rape victim's outfit pic.twitter.com/wYuSSIzkH6
— Madeline Peltz (@peltzmadeline) January 23, 2019
First of all, clothing shaming and rape victim-shaming has been a beloved trope of FOX hosts for years and they have no room to stand on when it comes to crying foul about unfairly treating victims, given the way that their hosts have participated in vicious smear campaigns against innocent black Americans murdered by police and prominent sexual assault victims.
Secondly, to wear the MAGA hat is an open embrace of Trumpism and everything he stands for — which is bigotry, xenophobia, ethnic cleansing, plutocracy, corruption, and hatred. Simply donning the article of clothing in public is as powerful a racial statement as donning a swastika armband would be.
To compare the active decision to place a symbol of white supremacy on your head to the sexist trope that women’s clothing choices entice sexual assault is disgusting and a clear sign that the right wing will say and do anything they can to make sure that racism continues to go unpunished in the United States.