First, he's not a "recon ranger," whatever that was supposed to mean:
|Discharged, but not never promoted|
|Cold hard truth|
Nothing wrong with that, but the records show he not a guy who ever saw combat, even though he hinted he served in Vietnam. And yes, he did hint that:
Phillips: When I was there and I was standing there and I seen that group of people in front of me and I seen the angry faces and all of that, I realized I had put myself in a really dangerous situation. Here’s a group of people who were angry at somebody else and I put myself in front of that, and all of a sudden, I’m the one whose all that anger and all that wanting to have the freedom to just rip me apart, that was scary. And I’m a Vietnam veteran and I know that mentality of “There’s enough of us. We can do this.” (Emphasis added.)
As has been well established, Phillips wasn't surrounded; in fact, he instigated the incident. And he wasn't done:
While chanting and playing ceremonial drums, a group of Native American rights activists reportedly led by Nathan Phillips attempted Jan. 19 to enter Washington, D.C.’s Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception during a Saturday evening Mass.
The group of 20 demonstrators was stopped by shrine security as it tried to enter the church during its 5:15 pm Vigil Mass, according to a shrine security guard on duty during the Mass.
“It was really upsetting,” the guard told CNA.
The kids from Covington Catholic, including the kid with the apparently radioactive smirk, did not enter the day intending to be the target of invective. It's quite likely these kids are sinners. We all are. But it simply won't do to say these kids were victimizing a tribal elder. They weren't.