I know the world seems like a strange place with Trump in charge, but some things remain the same. The Patriots are still Super Bowl favorites, Celine Dion still sucks and David Barton is still sharing fake quotes — even ones that he previously admitted could not be attributed to the men he attributes them to.
On Friday, David Barton tweeted a video of a talk he gave to legislators in 2017 about education. In it, he gave lots of statistics and what he claimed were historical facts. Much of what he said sounded either obvious or false but I can’t say for sure since I haven’t checked it all. However, at about 30 minutes into the talk, he said something that was vintage Barton.
He showed a picture of Abe Lincoln and claimed Lincoln said:
The philosophy of the schoolroom in one generation will be the philosophy of government in the next.
Veteran Barton watchers will know where I am going. The quote can’t be found in Lincoln’s writings or speeches. At one time (as late as 2012), Barton considered it an “unconfirmed” quote. Barton knows the quote can’t be sourced to Lincoln but he attributed it to Lincoln anyway.
This isn’t how actual historians behave. They don’t try to fool their audiences into believing something that isn’t true. And this isn’t the first time with this exact same quote.
Typical Barton. In 2012, he admitted that this quotation was “unconfirmed,” yet he’s still quoting it more than six years later and attributed it to Lincoln. What has changed in the meantime? Absolutely nothing. That quote has still never been found anywhere in Lincoln’s speeches or writings. So why does he keep repeating it? Because he is a professional liar. It’s like asking why a snake eats a mouse. It’s what he does.