In the midst of their increasing notoriety, a Covington Catholic High School defended the use of blackface as “showing school spirit” on Fox and Friends, according to the Daily Beast.
Steve Doocy, a co-host, asked, “Five years ago, there was a pep rally where one of the members of the school body appeared to have blackface on. People have even asked you to explain that. How do you explain that?”
Kentucky private-school senior Sam Schroder answered, “I just explain it as showing school spirit. We have many themes. Like nerd, business, whiteout, blueout, blackout—as you’ve seen in the video. Ever since I’ve gone to CovCath, we haven’t been able to wear black paint because of the video, but I know the kids meant nothing by it, it’s just showing school spirit.”
On Monday, a video surfaced of the “school spirit” when a Covington Catholic junior, Nicholas Sandmann appeared in a stand-off with a Native American leader in Washington, D.C. last weekend. Another video showed students doing the “tomahawk chop,” a gesture that has long been a source of irritation from Native Americans.
A lawyer for the school, Robert Barnes, also appeared on Fox & Friends. He threatened lawsuits against those who denounced Sandmann.
Co-host Ainsley Earhardt asked Barnes, “What defendants are you most disappointed in that have not retracted or not apologized?”
Barnes answered, “People like Maggie ‘Haberstam’ at The New York Times. She’s a news reporter, she’s the leading reporter for what is perceived as the leading newspaper in the country. She falsely made statements about these kids. She basically invited their expulsion from school and the ruining of their reputations, and she did so based on inadequate review of the information and a failure to look at the evidence—despite knowing from her own newspaper how false those original statements are, she has yet to retract, yet to correct, yet to apologize, and she’ll be one of the people sued if she doesn’t do it in the next 48 hours.”
Barnes was referencing a tweet from January 19th by a White House correspondent, Maggie Haberman. Haberman wrote, “There are dozens of students laughing and egging on the behavior. Will be interesting to see if anyone is actually expelled, as officials suggest is possible.”