2018 Lie of the Year: Smears after Parkland shooting
PolitiFact has announced its 2018 Lie of the Year: An online smear machine that tried to take down Parkland students.
From our colleagues at PolitiFact National:
In the days after 17 people were viciously gunned down at a high school in Florida, the state’s Republican governor called for tighter gun laws and President Donald Trump hosted victims’ families in the State Dining Room.
The nation seemed steadfast in seeking answers and finding solutions.
"It’s not going to be talk like it has been in the past," Trump said. "It’s been going on too long. Too many instances, and we're going to get it done."
But in the shadows, the internet engine of hoaxes and smears had started.
The lies went like this: David Hogg, an outspoken student of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, was really a "crisis actor" coached on what to say. Hogg wasn’t even from Florida, he was from California. Students, who began to advocate for restrictions on guns, had secretly organized before the shooting or were backed by radicals with a history of violence. Another student, Emma González, was a communist with ties to Cuba. She even ripped up the U.S. Constitution.