On Wednesday, Covington Catholic High School teen Nick Sandmann did an interview with Savannah Guthrie of the Today show, talking about the incident involving Native American elder Nathan Phillips that took place in Washington, D.C., a few days ago. Now, Phillips did an interview with Guthrie and Today to share his perspective.
As the Inquisitr previously detailed, Covington Catholic High School student Nick Sandmann said that he had every right to stand where he did during those moments facing Nathan Phillips. He says that his position is that he was not disrespectful to Phillips, that he respects him, and he’d like to talk to him.
Thursday morning, Today broadcast an interview with Phillips to get his reaction on things. The Native American elder said that he’d woken up feeling strong with a positive attitude. He also said that he’d woken up Wednesday morning with a good feeling in his heart and he’d forgiven everybody who had been mean to him in these past few days.
When asked specifically about Sandmann’s interview, Phillips said he was upset he was made to sit down and watch it. Nathan says he’d read the Covington teen’s statement that was released earlier this week and he watched just a portion of the televised interview before he had to turn it off.
"Even though I'm still angry, I still have forgiveness in my heart for those students," Native American elder Nathan Phillips said on the Today Show. https://t.co/LMxCYYmI5Z
— USA TODAY (@USATODAY) January 24, 2019
Ultimately, the Native American elder says he feels that what the teen said seemed coached and insincere. Phillips said he felt that Sandmann seemed unwilling to accept responsibility for what happened. However, he adds, he then went to pray about it and came away with a forgiving heart and now he forgives the teen.
Phillips said he thinks he’s far down on the list of people who Sandmann owes an apology. He mentioned that not only could the teen have walked away during that difficult moment, but he feels apologies are necessary for the tomahawk chops, mocking, and other issues that came from the group during that time.
“Yesterday I woke up with all kinds of good feelings in my heart. For all those who’ve been mean to me, I want to forgive them.” -Nathan Phillips pic.twitter.com/w2QMjbzX45
— TODAY (@TODAYshow) January 24, 2019
Phillips went on to open up about how he felt spiritually moved as he prayed during that tense moment when he stepped in between the teens and the Black Hebrew Israelites who were present and causing a fair amount of the chaos. He also noted how he and his group were working to walk forward as the teens circled around them and they saw a clear space to move through when suddenly Sandmann was standing there and blocking him.
In terms of what he wants to see next, Phillips says he’s still angry at the students, chaperones, and teachers, but he still has forgiveness in his heart. He admits that he still has questions, but as the Inquisitr detailed, he doesn’t feel that a conversation specifically involving just him and Sandmann would be the most productive way forward.
This has definitely been a complex scenario that has sparked a great deal of outrage, buzz, and controversial discussion. It looks rather unlikely that Nick Sandmann and Nathan Phillips will end up on good terms with one another, but many would say there appears to be more healing and growth that would be valuable to see happen on all sides involved.