Last weekend the media did exactly what it’s not supposed to do: Jumped on a viral story without first checking the facts.
And in so doing, helped destroy the reputations of innocent teenagers who had simply been on a school trip to D.C. to attend the annual March for Life.
As new information came out, and it was clear the original narrative was no longer supportable, the media began walking back its original reporting.
But it was too late. The anger against these students — who were being accused of harassing and taunting a Native American man — had already boiled over. Their school has since been canceled over security concerns.
On Saturday’s “NBC Nightly News,” anchor Jose Diaz-Balart “reported”: “A troubling scene many are calling racist, played out in Washington yesterday, on the steps of the Lincoln memorial. Some students harassing an older Native American man, a Vietnam vet.”
On MSNBC’s “Politics Nation,” Martin Luther King III told host Al Sharpton: “Yesterday a Native American man was confronted by young people with Make America Great Again hats on, there’s something wrong with that.”
On CNN, Native American activist Chase Iron Eyes blamed Trump, saying: “We feel that President Trump is giving license to some of this behavior.”
Sizing up the scene, MSNBC’s Joy Ann Reid said: “When you have the kind of anger that we saw at the Indigenous People’s March, where a veteran, a Native American man, you know had a standoff with students who were, you know, mocking him.”
CNN’s Christi Paul said of the students: “We can only hope that they’re in the minority, hopefully.”
For more, check out the montage above.