Jill Biden's video manipulated to claim students heckled U.S. First Lady

By: Ishita Goel
August 31 2023

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Jill Biden's video manipulated to claim students heckled U.S. First Lady


The Verdict False

Jill Biden was not abused by children during her visit to a school in Washington, DC. The video was digitally edited to include profanity.

Claim ID 76b8e8d8

On August 28, United States President Joe Biden and First Lady Jill Biden visited a middle school in Washington, DC, to welcome the students on their first day of the new school year. The couple welcomed and interacted with the children at Eliot-Hine Middle School. 

What is the claim?

Following the visit, social media users trolled Jill Biden and shared a short clip purportedly showing a child shouting profanity while she addressed the students. "An eighth grader shuts Jill Biden down. Are eighth graders this tired of the Corrupt Biden family," one post on X (formerly Twitter) with over 23,000 views said (Archived link). "This is what we all wish we could say to Jill Biden," known conspiracy theorist and the producer of the pseudoscience documentary 'Died Suddenly' Stew Peters wrote on X (Archived link) as he shared the video. His tweet garnered over 4,200 likes and nearly 900 reposts at the time of publishing.

Screenshot of the viral posts on X. (Source: X/Altered by Logically Facts)

In the 16-second clip(Archive link), we can hear Jill saying, "As the president said, I teach English, I teach at Nova. Have you heard of Northern Virginia Community College? Yeah, yeah, okay, it's not far from here. So, my first day is next Tuesday, soo" and around the 0:13 timestamp, she appears to be interrupted by a child seemingly asking her to "shut the f*** up." Other archived links to the posts are here and here

The narrative is viral on several social media platforms (Source: X/TikTok/Alterted by Logically Facts)

What really happened?

Several media organizations broadcasted the complete video of the Bidens' visit to the school. On comparing the viral clip to the reportage, we found that the former was manipulated to include profanity.

The Independent posted the full video on YouTube on August 28 with the title, "Watch again: Joe Biden and first lady Jill Biden visit DC public school to welcome students back." Around the 8:03 mark, the viral clip starts, and thereafter, we hear no profanity. The First Lady continues her address, saying, "Like your teachers, wherever they went," after which she pauses and looks around for the teacher. The teacher can be seen raising her hand, to laughter from the room, to which Jill Biden reacts by saying, "Here they are." She adds, "I've been working on my lesson plans and what I'm going to do the first day." Her reaction while looking for the teacher is used to make it seem that she is shocked by the profanity hurled by a student.

The Independent's video report on Bidens' visit.

Similarly, the American cable and satellite television network C-SPAN also published the video of the interaction along with the transcript. Likewise, the transcript showed no profanity. Around the 01:08 mark, we hear Jill from the viral clip and once again find that no child had hurled any abuse at her or used foul language. 

C-SPAN coverage of Joe and Jill Biden's interaction with the students.

The Washington Post published a story of the Bidens' visit to the school. The report said the school teacher addressed the students and then asked the Bidens to take over. The report also did not mention anything regarding students using derogatory language against Jill. 

Where did the profanity come from?

We were able to locate the original video of the kid swearing. We found reports and videos from June 2019. Reports said a child was pulled out of his graduation ceremony after he shouted profanity at his teacher. In a YouTube video, around the 0:04 mark, we can hear a kid asking his teacher to "shut the f*** up." The voice, tone of the boy, and the 'ah' reaction from others in the background are the same as heard in the viral clip.

Screenshot of the original video of the kid swearing at his teacher. (Source: YouTube/Alterted by Logically Facts)

The verdict

The viral clip has been digitally manipulated to include profanity and falsely claim that students heckled Jill Biden.

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