Ethics Hero, Covington Catholic Students Fake News: Dusty Smith

Who is Dusty Smith? That’s him above. He’s a pundit, activist and atheist who runs the “Humanist Society of Mississippi, ” is a self-proclaimed progressive, and detests Donald Trump. Unlike so many progressives and Trump-Haters however, truth and integrity still mean something to him. Thus it is that after initially reacting in knee-jerk, Pavlovian fashion to a false news story that seemed to bolster all sorts of mainstream news media, 2016 Post Election Ethics Train Wreck, “resistance” narratives—Catholics are bad, white males are toxic, whites are racists, Trump supporters are racists, pro-life advocates are fools, “The Age of Trump” has energized racism, just to name a few—-he actually reviewed the evidence, and realized that the story was, in his words, “bullshit.” He was disgusted, and made this video…

Nice job, Dusty.

His is one of many examinations of this fiasco emerging on the web now, not that it has discouraged many on social media from still citing the original story so they can signal to their “Orange Man Bad” friends that the posteris right-thinking and virtuous and deserves  a tsunami of “likes” and  “loves.” I bear an ugly truth:  there is no excuse for this. It is irresponsible, incompetent, and destructive. You don’t denigrate a kid and paint a target on his back…

Reza Aslan

@rezaaslan

Honest question. Have you ever seen a more punchable face than this kid’s?

…without being damn certain of your facts. (Actually, you never paint a target on a kid’s back, but let’s start with baby steps, since Trump-Hate has eaten so many consciences and ethics alarms.) Oh, but these kids were wearing MAGA hats, so they deserve it, right? That was the instant approach of the biased journalists and their inexcusably credulous readers, who then joined the social media mobs. It is not just because I was suspicious of the story from the beginning that I state now that everyone should have smelled a rat. After all, just the day before, the mainstream media whipped itself into an impeachment orgy based on a fake “bombshell” from the internet equivalent of the National Enquirer, BuzzFeed. Nor was that the first clue (or the hundredth)  that the media can’t be trusted, particularly when it comes to conservatives and MAGA hats. Journalists have disgraced themselves progressively (in both definitions of the word)  since at least the 2008 Presidential campaign; they cannot be trusted, and their abdication of ethical journalism now poses a direct threat to democracy. The members of the public who eagerly accepted the attack on the Covington school kids as fact aided and abetted divisive propaganda that they want to be true.

Writes Marta Hernandez about this incident in part at Victory Girls (which I am adding today to the Ethics Alarms links):

This is what happens when people toss their logic aside and turn to their outrage as a source of “action.”

This is what we have become as a society – hordes of Internet mobs, seeking revenge at the expense of real justice, believing that their lackadaisical unwillingness to look past their biases and do actual research before embarking on campaigns to destroy people’s lives is somehow equivalent to real efforts to stand up to racism and prejudice.

These people sit on the shoulders of giants – Ezell Blair Jr., David Richmond, Franklin McCain and Joseph McNeil – who staged a sit-in at a segregated Woolworth’s lunch counter in Greensboro, NC, refused to leave after being denied service, and were subsequently arrested for trespassing, disorderly conduct or disturbing the peace – and claim their unhinged, hate-filled effort to destroy “the enemy” without facts, without reason, without objectivity, and without so much as an attempt to find an unbiased truth are equivalent to the struggle for civil rights.

And [god] forbid [if] you disagree with them for any reason! You must be a racist. You must be a less than human, piece of shit that needs to be immediately destroyed – your reputation ruined, your life threatened, your family frightened, and your livelihood destroyed. All because social justice zealots must show how woke they are by turning their outrage into action – no matter how unwarranted the outrage, and no matter how harmful the action….

Outrage gives the indolent and cowardly a weapon with which to target their political enemies from the relative safety of their computer keyboards, and manufactured outrage, such as the Covington story, gives them convenient targets.

Outrage gives the media a weapon with which to foment yet more discontent and indignation to help denigrate the enemy (in this case, Trump, because ORANGEMANBAD and everything bad that happens – real or not – is his fault).

Outrage gives social media warriors an outlet to show just how badass, woke, and “courageous” they are as they target demean, and debase a bunch of kids without context.

Outrage forces us to focus on the “enemy” within – at our friends, our neighbors, our coworkers, and our family members – who may hold opposing political viewpoints or support political candidates whom we find less than palatable.

Outrage tears our nation apart from within.

Exactly.

 

 

35 thoughts on “Ethics Hero, Covington Catholic Students Fake News: Dusty Smith

  1. This social media/media outrage phenomenon reminds me of what we were told about Soviet Cuba as kids growing up ninety miles away in Miami, Florida. We were told everyone in Cuba was tasked with keeping an eye on their neighbors and encouraged to inform the local block captain of any untoward behavior by anyone in the neighborhood. If you said or thought anything bad about the wonderful Castro Brothers regime, you’d be reported and dealt with accordingly. You wouldn’t get your ration of rice and beans or something like that. Or you’d be thrown in prison and murdered. You know.

    I think we’re entering a version of this kind of thought and behavior control. And boy, are people ever gleeful about it. They can now get everyone on the right side of history. ASAP. Why they think this is a good idea is beyond me.

    • Except there actually was a threat in Cuba. Castro tried to start a nuclear war between the United States and the USSR. What was done was bad, but this is even worse. Here we have even more extreme behavior when there is no actual threat.

      • You lost me, Michael. “Actual threat?”

        I think the Cuban Missile Crisis was just the Soviets taking advantage of a puppet regime to place nuclear missiles right next to the U.S, probably like the U.S. and NATO were doing in Europe. Just tit for tat stuff. Fidel was simply happy to let the Russians poke the Capitalist Pigs in the eye better than he could.

        Spying on your neighbors is part of the societal control essential to a socialist model.

  2. Facebook is blocking sharing of your posts on the Covington High/Native American controversy….have tried yesterday and today…”this message can’t be sent..”

  3. Outrage forces us to focus on the “enemy” within – at our friends, our neighbors, our coworkers, and our family members – who may hold opposing political viewpoints or support political candidates whom we find less than palatable.

    Outrage allows us to discard our ethics alarms and act as if they no longer matter, or must be modified. Because anything in defense of our tribal beliefs must de-facto be ethical, and if it isn’t, it must be redefined as ethical. Analysis can never be allowed to supplant feelings.

  4. Nothing will change with the political left, they will use the story to smear regardless of truth, it;’s all about emotion filled propaganda attacks – truth is secondary and can just be explained away. The social justice warriors and progressives will twist this story around until it is completely unrecognizable and continue to use it as a smear of Republicans; after-all, war is peace, freedom is slavery.

    The problem we’ve got is that progressives look in the mirror and they see this V.I.E.W. (Virtuous In Every Way) looking back, it’s ideological pompousness. These people actually think that they cannot be wrong.

    • I wrote, “The social justice warriors and progressives will twist this story around until it is completely unrecognizable and continue to use it as a smear of Republicans”

      I offer evidence to support my claim…

      Fallout From Racist Covington Catholic High School Teenagers

      Here is the text before the rhetorical coward blogger removes it…

      As if there were not enough awful news stories from the past week comes a truly gut-wrenching example of how Donald Trump is an infection. And we need to highlight it, over and over. This type of behavior from this past week must be called out both to recognize what is happening to our country, and to throw down a line that can not be crossed in America. We can not allow for such pathetic deeds to occur without push-back from the majority of ethically and morally grounded citizens.

      By now we know a diocese in Kentucky has apologized after videos surfaced showing students from a boys Catholic high school mocking American Indians outside the Lincoln Memorial after a rally in Washington. There is no way to make this up.

      Disgusting.

      Vile.

      And all too real in Donald Trump’s America.

      The Indigenous Peoples March in Washington on Friday coincided with the March for Life, which drew thousands of anti-abortion protesters, including a group from Covington Catholic High School in Park Hills.

      Videos circulating online show a boy staring at and standing extremely close to Nathan Phillips as the older man sings and beats a drum. Clearly the boys were not educated that the real way to show respect for life does not start or end with a fetus, but extends to how we treat the totality of a person’s life.

      To make the episode even more bizarre were the theatrics of these white male teenagers wearing Covington clothing while also donning red “Make America Great Again” hats and sweatshirts. With the same goonish antics that all bigots employ these would-be thugs surrounded native Americans while laughing and jeering. Can you you see them on a dark country road in Kentucky?

      It was sickening to watch.

      To add to the level of revulsion felt towards those teenagers is the fact that according to the Indian Country Today website, Phillips is an Omaha tribe elder and Vietnam veteran who holds an annual ceremony honoring American Indian veterans at Arlington National Cemetery.

      To have that man so dis-honored underscores the racist infection that is spreading across this land. The cause of the national disease begins with Trump in the White House who has so abused our national norms, sensibilities, and traditions. He has urged white nationalism, xenophobia, and racial hatred. Too many around the nation, who harbor white supremacist views, think they can now act out and get away with it. They can not. The teenagers are not being allowed to escape the scorn of a nation as they are more than old enough to have known better.

      We need, as a nation, to call them out for their actions. That is done to make sure there is still moral clarity in our land as to what is acceptable. And equally important, what will not be condoned.

      That blog was written yesterday after the story had been debunked all over the place.

  5. I have difficulty dubbing this guy an ethics hero for calling out one eggregious, easily refuted claim about these teens. One cannot be a hero for doing what is right one time.

    Dusty Smith regularly used derogatorycomments about conservatives and others during his post. His primary issue was to make sure that these stories do not undercut the credibility of biased stories that can appear more credible.

    • We’ve got to acknowledge baby steps when their being made. In a rational, sane time this wouldn’t be necessary but that’s where we are now.

      • I agree with Chris one hundred percent. Dusty Smith is awful and a dyed in the wool ultra lefty. He despises Catholic high school kids because most of them are white. This is just Brett Kavanaugh all over again. Kavanaugh was supposed to not get onto the court because he was guilty of being a Catholic jock high school kid when he was in high school.

        This is my problem with the whole “privilege” trope. Sorry, when I was raised by my parents and when I raised my kids, “privileging” them was what parents were supposed to do for their kids. My parents paid tuition to send my brother and me to Catholic schools because they cared about us and our education enough to do what they thought would be most beneficial. My wife and I sent our kids to private schools, country day schools, Andover, Georgetown, etc. to give them a leg up, to privilege them. Is that wrong? These kids in that school in Kentucky are despicable because their parents send them to a Catholic school at great expense because they care about their kids? The only good kids are the ones whose parents don’t give a crap about them? But if the Catholic schools were closed, the public schools would be better. Right. Tell that to your local teacher’s union rep. Who was it that said of Communism it solves income inequality by making everyone poor. (To which I would add, except the guys in charge.)

        Anyway, Dusty Smith is not heroic. He may be right in certain respects about this incident and its coverage, but he’s not a clear thinker. He’s just a little smarter than the average addled progressive.

  6. At that age I would not have behaved as politely as these teens did. Too much ice hockey for me. Somebody would have gotten bloodied and badly so.

    Kudos to these kids for not succumbing to their fight reflex.

  7. I am usually level-headed, but the abuse directed to these kids really pisses me off. I can see this happening to the teen group at my local parish. I can even see this happening at the Catholic school I went as a youngster… and it boils my blood.

    This is anger. I want to think righteous anger.

    This is the kind of behavior that makes me want to look for the responsible parties, look them straight in the eye and call them cowards, bullies, and abusers. I want to goad them and provoke them. I want them to give me an excuse to go medieval on them.

    I am not proud of wanting to do that, but I can’t think of a better way to deal with this behavior. At some point we have to draw a line and rebuke those who are destroying society. I believe this abuse of the students is the line that is not to be crossed for me.

    Tit-for-tat is bad ethics, but at this point, when nothing else has worked, tit-for-tat and escalation into scorched earth tactics is the only way out I see to save the culture I have proudly adopted.

    Sorry for the rant, but the news about these kids has destroyed any remaining good faith I had in the Left and the media.

    • You cannot win bringing a knife to gun fight (or other such metaphors). If escalation is required make sure you are prepared to have the winning hand before showing up. Many are being pushed to the limits of civility by these SJW thugs. Don’t underestimate them.

    • This is the kind of behavior that makes me want to look for the responsible parties, look them straight in the eye and call them cowards, bullies, and abusers. I want to goad them and provoke them. I want them to give me an excuse to go medieval on them.

      The Black group is a strange sect. Black Hebrew Israelites. I did not read the whole Wiki article, but this sort of Black identity is somewhat similar to the Black identity of Marcus Garvey and Bob Marley sings about it in his songs. The idea that African slaves are descendants of one of the lost tribes of Israel. It it is an *identity* movement for people who had substantially lost their identity in the Black diaspora and latch onto something in order to recover it. Reggae music had some of these elements. “Know your history, know your identity” that sort of thing.

      Most Black identity movements that are tinged with Black Liberation Theology will have these ‘notes’. It is the logical outcome of having lost your identity in a robbery of the human body. You have been taken out of your context and forced not only to work but to take on the identity of the one who robbed you. You were made to work ‘in the empire of the white man’s will’ and when you became aware of the ramifications of that you had no choice but to rebel.

      These facts have to be understood. The *Black Identity Project* in America has now and will forever have these tones and notes. There is no way for this to be different.

      I am not proud of wanting to do that, but I can’t think of a better way to deal with this behavior. At some point we have to draw a line and rebuke those who are destroying society. I believe this abuse of the students is the line that is not to be crossed for me.

      Speaking to the Black liberation movement generally, you cannot ‘rebuke’ them because your rebuke is fuel. The more rebuke, the more they will rise up against it. This is a profound psychological issue. It is psycho-somatic. It has to do with *wounds* that are registered in the body at a level far below (if I can put it like this) the conscious person. The crime has to be avenged.

      When ‘white America’ recognizes this, it will be in a better position to understand that this situation has no solution. The more power gained, the more the desire to revenge will appear. It is simple social mathematics.

      Tit-for-tat is bad ethics, but at this point, when nothing else has worked, tit-for-tat and escalation into scorched earth tactics is the only way out I see to save the culture I have proudly adopted.

      This is not an issue of ‘ethics’. This is an issue that has to do with profoundly complex and fraught questions that substantially transcend both ethics and morals. The ethical solution is separation. But more than that it is a moral necessity. But it is one of such vast complexity that no one can look at it and recognize it.

      Sorry for the rant, but the news about these kids has destroyed any remaining good faith I had in the Left and the media.

      It is not exactly right to see these two groups (Black identitarians and American Indian activists) as ‘of the left’. I suggest reading Tocqueville’s ‘On the Three Races in America’ (I may be mis-remembering the exact title).

      You do not have to be a Left-progressive to be an American Indian rights activist. And the Black Israelites are anything but Left-progressives. They are (if I may be so bold) lunatic semi-educated barbarians who are trying to ground themselves in a fabricated identity.

      The Catholic boys are are representatives of the *original stock of America* as an extension of English-European culture. Their identity is *real* and as real as that of the American Indian activists. But these identities are inimical to each other.

      The white Catholic boys are, as are all whites today, rather lost and confused. They do not know how to, or if it is proper and ethical, to fully live their own cultural trajectory. So they are *abashed*. What they are, what they do, but also what they are capable of civilizationally, is everything that made America (and Europe) what they are. They can continue the process.

      Those that oppose them, can’t. American Indians deserve their rights and have every good reason to be activists for them.

      The same is also true for Black Liberationists. And that is why they really need their own country and their complete sovereignty. If Lincoln’s view would have prevailed, that is what would have happened.

      There you have my unutterably realist, yet impossibly reactionary, view! (I don’t get invited to many parties obviously). 🙂

  8. Something I’m not seeing addressed by anyone here is what was going down between the black nationalists and the students. A few of the Catholic high school students were black. The black nationalists we’re calling those students “dumb sellout niggers” and the allegedly racist white students were offended by that. Clearly audiable in the video were multiple statements like “we love you like a brother” in support from the other students.
    The left will ignore who the real racists were during that March.

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