Tags: maga | sandmann | phillips | covington

Covington Student: 'I Was Not Disrespectful' to Elder

covington catholic high school
(AP)

By    |   Wednesday, 23 January 2019 10:57 AM

Covington Catholic High School junior Nick Sandmann denied in an interview airing Wednesday that he was disrespectful to Native American elder Nathan Phillips, and said in hindsight he wishes he and his classmates had walked away and avoided any confrontation.

“As far as standing there, I had every right to do so,” the 16-year-old said told NBC News' Savannah Guthrie in the interview for "Today."

"My position is that I was not disrespectful to Mr. Phillips. I respect him. I'd like to talk to him."

However, Sandmann said he was smiling, not smirking as many have claimed, while Phillips chanted and hit a drum in front of him, and he said he "can't say that I'm sorry for listening to him and standing there."

The encounter took place on Saturday after the March For Life rally, and went viral with video clips showing Sandmann standing in front of Phillips as classmates around him were yelling.

However, later, more full video showed the scene took place after the students, wearing red "Make America Great Again" hats Sandmann said they'd just bought from a street vendor, were taunted by members of the Black Hebrew Israelites.

“They started shouting a bunch of homophobic, racist, derogatory comments at us,” Sandmann said. “I heard them call us incest kids, bigots, racists."

The students were given permission to shout school chants to drown out the other protesters, but Sandmann told Guthrie he wishes they had found another place to wait for their buses.

He also said he was not sure where Phillips wanted to go when he walked toward him, but he would have let him pass if he wanted to go past.

"I didn’t want to be disrespectful to Mr. Phillips and walk away if he was trying to talk to me," said Sandmann.

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Covington Catholic High School junior Nick Sandmann denied that he was disrespectful to Native American elder Nathan Phillips.
maga, sandmann, phillips, covington
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2019-57-23
Wednesday, 23 January 2019 10:57 AM
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