Claim: Republican politicians are "banning books," including To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee.
Who said it: President Joe Biden in the video he released earlier this week officially launching his reelection campaign. When he says Republicans are "banning books," we see a stack of books at the top of which sits a worn paperback copy of To Kill a Mockingbird.
Context: Journalists and other Democrats frequently complain about Republicans "banning" books. They are almost always spreading misinformation. Usually the book in question has simply been removed from a school's curriculum—sometimes in response to complaints from parents, sometimes because the school board felt like it.
Why it matters: Perhaps the only things journalists and other Democrats hate more than book "bans" is misinformation, defined (by them) as information that has not been thoroughly vetted by journalists or some unaccountable board of left-wing "experts."
Nevertheless, they persist in spreading information about a wide range of topics and will do so even more passionately now that the 2024 election is underway.
Analysis: In August 2022, a bunch of liberals started spreading misinformation on social media. They claimed (without evidence) that To Kill a Mockingbird was on a list of books Gov. Ron DeSantis (R., Fla.) had recently "banned" from Florida public schools.
The Associated Press fact-checked the ridiculous claim, writing: "False. ... A school district in Florida’s Palm Beach County removed [To Kill a Mockingbird] from school libraries earlier this year as part of a review, but later returned it, according to district documents. The 'Banned Book List' shared across social media this week is also bogus, and includes many titles that aren’t banned in Florida, according to groups that track book bans and challenges."
As it turns out, a number of schools have recently "banned" (removed from their required reading lists) the Harper Lee novel about a white lawyer who defends a black man falsely accused of raping a white woman during the Great Depression.
As you might expect, the schools are located in and around Los Angeles, Seattle, and Madison, Wisconsin. Their respective boards took action in response to deranged liberal parents who denounced the book's "white-savior story line," complained that it "reflects a time when racism was tolerated" and "ignores the reality of black agency in resistance," whatever that means.
It would appear that Sleepy Joe's ability to discern fact from fiction is as shoddy as his ability to understand where he is at any given moment.