Make America divided again

photo by Brian Reed

Journalists’ coverage of Nick Sandmann and the Covington Catholic boys seemed one-sided…at least on the first day of coverage. As facts unfolded, this initial view of Sandmann was debunked by many in the media.

by Staff Editorial



An encounter at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C. on January 18, between Nick Sandmann and Nathan Phillips, left everyone debating who was in the wrong. Was it Sandmann, a junior at Covington Catholic High School, who wore a “Make America Great Again” hat and stood his ground? Or was it Phillips, a Native American, who was banging a drum while singing? Or was it the journalist who first brought this encounter to light?

The journalist chose the story they wanted people to see which is not what journalism is about.

Journalism by definition is the act of gathering, assessing, creating, and presenting news and information. A big part of journalism is research which journalists who first covered the story did not present. If they would’ve researched the facts and the people involved, then they would have known that this is not the first time Phillips has twisted a story.

We, the journalists at Meridian High School, believe the journalist was in the wrong. A journalist’s job is to give EQUAL representation, show the facts of all sides of a story and let the people decide what they believe. Journalists who initially covered the story should have taken the time to publish both sides instead of rushing to get one side out to the public. The story would have been just as interesting, but it would not have led people to argue/fight and send death threats to Sandmann.

Journalists destroyed their careers to publish a story they knew would get them attention. Look at what this story has done to the relationships between people in America. Our country has been divided yet again over a story that was made for attention. If they wanted to actually produce a good, factual story, then they would’ve interviewed Sandmann, Phillips, and the cameraman at least. However, they took one of the biggest arguments in our country today and exploited it–racism.

We need to have consequences set in place for this kind of disgusting reporting. There are some legal measures people can take, for example, suing in regards to false facts. However, nothing really holds a journalist accountable like the public who reads these stories.

We need to change journalism, it needs to be something people respect and can trust for information. So we ask you to hold your journalists accountable, there needs to be consequences for fake news. Therefore, change should take place now and it starts with you.