Fake News Doesn’t Pay: CNN Caves, Settles With Nick Sandmann

Fake News Doesn’t Pay: CNN Caves, Settles With Nick Sandmann

Fake News Doesn’t Pay: CNN Caves, Settles With Nick Sandmann

Peddling fake news can be very problematic. CNN has now learned that the hard way …TWICE. Yesterday it was announced that CNN caved and has settled with Covington Catholic’s Nick Sandmann.

“CNN agreed Tuesday to settle a lawsuit with Covington Catholic student Nick Sandmann.
The amount of the settlement was not made public during a hearing at the federal courthouse in Covington, Kentucky.”

The lawsuit was filed earlier in 2019 and demanded $800 million in damages regarding the “emotional distress” Nick Sandmann and his family suffered from the media’s story-telling. And it was quite the story-telling. 

As we wrote multiple times, CNN and other members of the media framed the story as if the high school kids and Nick Sandmann in particular were the aggressors in the case.

“The lawsuits were filed following an incident in Jan. 2019 in Washington, D.C. involving Covington Catholic High School students. Videos of that incident garnered national attention.

The initial video showed the self-identified Sandmann, now a senior at CovCath, and Nathan Phillips, an indigenous man who was participating in the Indigenous Peoples March. Sandmann and his classmates were in D.C. for the March For Life.”

Even as video came out showing Sandmann and his classmates were innocent, the media kept doubling down. 

Why did they keep digging? Because of a certain red hat in my opinion. How DARE kids think for themselves and wear the dreaded hateful MAGA hat??!! How DARE kids determine for themselves that Republican anything is good? How DARE kids even consider that Trump is a swell guy?

High school kids on a trip to Washington D.C. for the March For Life event. High school kids goofing around, singing songs and leading school cheers on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial while waiting for their bus. Not aggressive, just goofy kids. Kids who were being targeted by the atrocious Black Hebrew Israelite protestors. And then, for whatever reason, Nathan Phillips got involved.

CNN along with the rest of the media went all in with Nathan Phillips. His statements touting the students as “beastly” and the BHI group as innocent were taken as complete fact and the media quit looking for the rest of the story.

Nick Sandmann’s interview was touted as a CYA move on his part.

And then, finally, the media woke up and realized they had once again screwed the pooch. Gee, where have we heard that before? Look at the media fails from 2019. Look at twelve stories the media rushed to judgement on.

Oh, and how about Richard Jewell? This settlement is not the only one that CNN has dealt with. CNN ended up settling with Richard Jewell for $500,000 in 1997. CNN said at the time of the settlement that they still believed their reporting was …”fair and accurate.” RIIIGHHT.

Here’s how the Denver Post framed the settlement this morning.

“The teen and his classmates entered the national spotlight after video and photos appeared of him wearing a “Make America Great Again” hat while staring and sometimes smiling at a Native American man.”

Did you catch that? No matter that CNN settled and the story was debunked in January, the media is still trying to infer that Nick Sandmann is somehow at fault for what happened.

CNN’s settlement with Nick Sandmann sends a very big signal to the media.

Will they learn from it? Given that they didn’t learn from their mistakes with Richard Jewell as well as the media fails from 2019, I highly doubt they will.

Apologize? The media? Pigs will fly if a SINCERE apology is ever issued. Narrative is far more important than facts and reality.

Feature Photo Credit: CNN Center by Ken Lund on Flickr, cropped and modified

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1 Comment
  • GWB says:

    The amount of the settlement was not made public
    I think it definitely should be. I understand gag rules on these things*, but this one was egregious, and needs to displayed publicly so that others will not repeat the stupidity.
    (It also needs to be public so we can figure out how much the lawyers made, vs how much him and his family received.)

    demanded $800 million in damages
    I think that was across all 3 lawsuits (CNN, WaPo, and NBC, iirc – 250, 275, and 275).

    went all in with Nathan Phillips
    Because he was a member of a protected class, and therefore was an unimpeachable character! Except there’s no such thing nowadays (thanks, cancel culture!) and his story and his character got very impeached.

    CNN said at the time of the [Jewell] settlement that they still believed their reporting was …”fair and accurate.”
    And that’s why I am thoroughly against settling and having any kind of gag order in these cases. The settlement should absolutely require a public apology and a disclosure of the sum. If you still think you done right, then let’s go before a jury with it.

    Pigs will fly if a SINCERE apology is ever issued.
    Honestly, I don’t care if it’s sincere or not. I want it on record, though.
    First, if they publicly say they were wrong, then any future articles making the same claims can get them another libel suit (yay! moar money!). Also, any other folks making the same claim using the original articles or the same sources can be sued (hey guys! already won libel on this one, and there’s the public retraction right there!).
    Second, it’s a moral and public vindication. The whole point of slander/libel is that your reputation was besmirched. There’s no amount of money that will clean that off the record if there’s not also an apology involved. IMO.

    (* I actually used to support them. It helps deter copycats. But, then again, the folks involved have been so egregious about their bad behavior that I no longer worry about the $$$ they’ll spend defending themselves.
    I have also come to absolutely hate the lawfare that enables plea deals – whether civil or criminal. [And a settlement is essentially a civil plea deal.])

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