Today the Republican Party decided to mark Abraham Lincoln’s birthday with the following tweet.
Unfortunately, there is no evidence that Lincoln ever uttered or wrote these words. Amazingly, the manager of this twitter account has yet to take the tweet down or issue a correction. It is certainly not the most egregious example of fake history to come down the pike, but it does point to how easy it is to fall for it.
More than likely the quote was pulled without question from a website. One or two critical questions about the quote’s source would have been sufficient to avoid this little embarrassment.
But as long as this tweet is still up we can be guaranteed that it will continue to be passed on by people who extend their trust without a critical eye. That includes the president, who during the campaign admitted, “All I know is what’s on the Internet.”
Help make America great again. Consult with your school librarian and devote just a little time to showing your students how to search and assess information from the Web.