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New Urban Legends

Recent additions to the Urban Legends Reference Pages at

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Is This Really Donald Trump's Inauguration Poem?

Tue, 17 Jan 2017 17:00:59 -0800

A poem inspired by Donald Trump's inauguration was widely shared as if it were the official poem for the event. It is not.

Can U.S. Birth Certificates Unlock Hidden 'Strawman' Financial Accounts?

Tue, 17 Jan 2017 14:58:49 -0800

A specious theory that the U.S. has turned citizens into "collateral" was developed by a convicted forger with ties to white nationalists.

President Obama Commutes Much of Chelsea Manning's Sentence

Tue, 17 Jan 2017 14:20:44 -0800

The United States Army intelligence analyst had been serving a 35-year-long prison sentence after she was convicted of stealing and disseminating classified information in 2010.

Maine Gov. LePage: John Lewis Should Thank Republican Presidents for Freeing Slaves, Fighting Jim Crow

Tue, 17 Jan 2017 14:19:51 -0800

Governor Paul LePage sought to school Rep. John Lewis in African-American history after Lewis suggested Trump's presidency is illegitimate.

Has the ACLU Demanded that Police Remove Body Cams During Inauguration Protests?

Tue, 17 Jan 2017 13:41:15 -0800

A misconstrued comment from an ACLU representative led to rumors the organization demanded police turn off body cameras during January 2017 protests in Washington, D.C.

CDC Issues Report On Deadly “Superbug” Resistant to 26 Different Antibiotics

Tue, 17 Jan 2017 13:10:49 -0800

The August 2016 case highlights a new front in the fight against antibiotic resistance.

Former 'Apprentice' Contestant Files Defamation Lawsuit Against Trump

Tue, 17 Jan 2017 12:48:22 -0800

Summer Zervos had accused Trump of sexual misconduct, and filed the suit saying he publicly defamed her by calling her a liar.

Is Paul Ryan Blocking All Calls and Faxes?

Tue, 17 Jan 2017 12:33:06 -0800

According to social media rumors, House Speaker Paul Ryan is not allowing any calls or faxes to reach his offices.

Is 'Demand Protest' Paying People to Protest at Donald Trump's Inauguration?

Tue, 17 Jan 2017 12:00:59 -0800

While several ads were placed for paid protesters in January 2017, the group reportedly behind the campaign may not be telling the truth about their intentions.

Are California College Students Castrating Themselves Over Trump's 'Wall'?

Tue, 17 Jan 2017 11:48:37 -0800

A dubious web site appears to have completely fabricated an account of a planned protest of Trump's plans for the U.S.-Mexico border.

Did the Soviet Union Ban Microwaves Due to Health Concerns?

Tue, 17 Jan 2017 11:09:08 -0800

This claim has its roots in an unsourced article from a man who likely does not exist, and whose only stated expertise came from working at an alternative bookstore and natural food shop in the 1970s.

Large Motorcycle Group Heading to Trump Inauguration?

Tue, 17 Jan 2017 10:00:53 -0800

A photograph showing a large group of motorcyclists riding on a highway is not related to Donald Trump's inauguration.

Did a Russian Prostitute Say Donald Trump Was Poorly Endowed?

Tue, 17 Jan 2017 08:05:00 -0800

A fake news site built upon rumors about Donald Trump and Russian sex workers to falsely claim a prostitute said he had a small penis.

Did Rep. John Lewis Skip Any Previous Inaugurations?

Tue, 17 Jan 2017 07:43:16 -0800

Rep. John Lewis proclaimed that Donald Trump's inauguration would the first he declined to attend, but he also skipped the 2001 inauguration of George W. Bush.

Chris Collins Says John Lewis Is 'Like a Spoiled Chimp That Got Too Many Bananas'?

Tue, 17 Jan 2017 07:12:14 -0800

A racist jibe purportedly directed at civil rights icon John Lewis by Trump transition team member Rep. Chris Collins was fabricated by a fake news site.

Bystanders Do Nothing While Man Undergoing Seizure Gets His Pocket Picked at Walmart?

Mon, 16 Jan 2017 16:11:45 -0800

A video shows a man convulsing on the floor at a Walmart store, with bystanders doing nothing to intervene when another man takes his wallet.

Biloxi Officials Adopt MLK Holiday After Criticism Over 'Great Americans Day'

Mon, 16 Jan 2017 15:22:07 -0800

The Biloxi city council voted unanimously to begin using the official name for the January federal holiday.

Giant Alligator Spotted at Florida Nature Preserve

Mon, 16 Jan 2017 14:48:05 -0800

The massive reptile was spotted and caught on video at the Polk Nature Discovery Center in Lakeland, Florida.

Did Martin Luther King Say 'Our Lives Begin to End the Day We Become Silent'?

Mon, 16 Jan 2017 14:30:17 -0800

An oft-quoted statement attributed to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. appears to have been paraphrased from a speech he made in 1965.

Did Harrison Ford Compare Donald Trump to Indiana Jones and Han Solo?

Mon, 16 Jan 2017 13:25:03 -0800

A quote ostensibly uttered by actor Harrison Ford comparing President-elect Donald Trump to "patriots" such as Indiana Jones is a fabrication.

Did Donald Trump Advocate a 'No-Wash' Bathroom Trick in 'The Art of the Deal'?

Mon, 16 Jan 2017 10:37:01 -0800

A passage purportedly taken from Donald Trump's 1987 book 'The Art of the Deal' advocates not washing hands after using the restroom as a "power play."

Was the U.S. Government Found Guilty of Assassinating Martin Luther King, Jr?

Mon, 16 Jan 2017 10:26:58 -0800

Conspiracy meme claims the United States government was sued and found culpable for the murder Martin Luther King, Jr., but the news media refused to report it.

Newspaper Pens 'Twilight Zone' Preview for Trump Inauguration

Mon, 16 Jan 2017 09:24:45 -0800

A Scottish newspaper imagined the upcoming event as an episode of the classic Rod Serling television series.

Greenwich Town Council Member Arrested After Political Argument

Mon, 16 Jan 2017 08:29:10 -0800

Connecticut Republican Christopher von Keyserling has been accused of "pinching" a woman inappropriately during a political dispute.

Does Nutella Contain a Known Carcinogen?

Mon, 16 Jan 2017 07:58:53 -0800

A number of sensational headlines inaccurately claimed that the popular hazelnut cocoa spread contains a known carcinogen.