COVINGTON, KY (FOX19) - The mayor of Covington, Ky. is doubling down on statements from this past weekend regarding an incident in Washington, D.C. involving Covington Catholic students, Elder Nathan Phillips, and Black Hebrew Israelites.
Covington Catholic High School might have Covington in its name, but it’s actually in Park Hills. On Tuesday night during a meeting at City Hall, Mayor Joseph Meyers said he wants people to stop vilifying his city, adding that scars from the incident are going to last a long time.
Voicemails and emails are flooding into Meyers' inboxes.
“This morning we have 533 voicemails from over the weekend and shortly before we came down here I had 90 more,” he said.
He said the city has been cursed and threatened by email, over the phone, and in person.
“Happened 900 miles away and coincidentally involves a school that actually isn’t even in Covington," he said. “Why are we being vilified?”
Meyers said that on one side, people are accusing the city of promoting racism and bigotry.
“My predecessors and I and both elected and appointed positions have worked hard for decades to create a place where all people are welcome,” he said.
The other side, he says, accuses them of attacking children.
“As for the students, I feel terrible that they were duped into confrontation,” he said.
The mayor has doubled down on his statement from this past weekend asking people to take a closer look.
“If you read my actual words Saturday it’s clear that condemning was not the motivation, my motivation was simple -- Covington’s reputation was being attacked on a national level and I stood up to defend it,” he said.
Every commissioner took a moment to speak after the mayor. One commissioner said the issue is much more nuanced than it is being presented. Another begged people to stop making violent threats.
The Diocese of Covington is now saying there will be a third-party investigation into what happened. That investigation is planned for this week.