Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, the director-general of the World Health Organization, is an advocate for equitable distribution of the COVID-19 vaccines in countries around the globe. But a social media post misleadingly claims, “Tedros says he isnt vaccinated.” Tedros shared a tweet on May 12, 2021 showing himself receiving a COVID-19 vaccine.
To avoid damage from heavy rains, U.S. Customs and Border Protection officials have opened floodgates along Arizona’s border fencing during monsoon season since 2009. But social media users, including Sen. Ted Cruz, shared posts with the misleading claim that the Biden administration opened the gates “by design” to allow illegal immigration.
After a fatal shooting at the University of North Carolina, Fox News displayed a photo of the suspect with this caption: “UNC Police Release Picture of Person of Interest.” But an altered screenshot of the news report circulating online shows this caption under the photo: “Shooter Described as ‘Mostly White Asian Male.'” A Fox News spokesperson called that caption a “fake.”
Democrats tend to win in densely populated counties, while Republicans win more sparse, rural counties. In 2020, the counties won by President Joe Biden had 67 million more residents than counties won by former President Donald Trump. Yet a social media post falsely asserts that because Biden won with fewer counties than Trump, “something isn’t adding up.”
The Federal Emergency Management Agency operates a Disaster Recovery Center on Maui and has approved $7 million in assistance to thousands of wildfire survivors. Online videos, however, are sharing a fabricated tale about FEMA’s operations, including a “shootout” with U.S. Marines. The bogus story originated on a satirical website.
The White House declared the site of the Maui wildfires a disaster area, and the Department of Defense has provided more than 400 troops, air support and other resources in firefighting and recovery efforts. Yet posts on Instagram misrepresent the federal response and one falsely claimed “the military is standing down.”
A Florida school district is allowing students to read only excerpts of “Romeo and Juliet” in class — not passages with sexual content. But a Facebook post incorrectly suggests all Florida high schools are removing the “full text” of the play from classrooms. The state’s education commissioner included the play on a recommended reading list for grades nine to 12.
The United States dropped nuclear bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki in August 1945, killing hundreds of thousands of people to force Japan’s surrender in World War II. A video on social media falsely claims the cities “were never nuked,” reasoning that nuclear bombs would have made those cities “uninhabitable for thousands of years.”
Sen. Mitt Romney has sometimes been critical of fellow Republicans and veered from the party line. But an Instagram post falsely claims Romney “threatens to leave the Republican Party and Join Democrats.” A Romney spokesperson said there is “zero truth” to the claim, and the senator has filed for reelection in 2024 as a Republican.