Fact Check: Photo Does NOT Show Bill Clinton and Jesse Jackson Without Face Masks At Funeral For John Lewis

Fact Check

  • by: Victoria Eavis
Fact Check: Photo Does NOT Show Bill Clinton and Jesse Jackson Without Face Masks At Funeral For John Lewis Wrong Funeral

Does this photo show former President Bill Clinton, Rev. Jesse Jackson, Rev. Al Sharpton, and others at Rep. John Lewis' funeral on July 30, 2020, without face masks? No, that's not true: This is an old photo taken at the funeral for Jesse Jackson's mother, Helen Burns Jackson, in 2015.

The claim originated in a post (archived here) where it was published on by Daily Political Newswire on Facebook on August 5, 2020. It read:

July 30, 2020

Funeral

NOT A MASK IN SITE

IS ANYONE AWAKE YET

This is what the post looked like on Facebook at the time of writing:

Facebook screenshot

(Source: Facebook screenshot taken on Thu Aug 6 15:16:07 2020 UTC)

The caption does not refer to Rep. Lewis directly, but his funeral was on July 30, 2020, and Clinton, Jackson, and Sharpton attended.

The photo used in the meme was taken of these men in September 2015, as described in an article from the Greenville, South Carolina, News:

Screen Shot 2020-08-06 at 11.50.29 AM.png

In the photo, you can see Rev. Jackson holding the pamphlet that features a photo of his mother, Burns Jackson. Below is the photo of Burns Jackson that is on the pamphlet:

GVN050663-1_20150911.jpg

Photos and video from the Lewis funeral in July 2020 show guests -- including Clinton -- wearing masks. Here, Clinton can be seen wearing a mask at the funeral:

image.jpg

The caption that accompanies this photo reads:

President Bill Clinton in attendance for Rep. John Lewis' funeral on Thursday. PHOTO: ALYSSA POINTER/AP/SHUTTERSTOCK
This photo of a masked crowd is a screenshot from a video of Barack Obama's eulogy for Lewis:
Screen Shot 2020-08-06 at 12.00.36 PM.png

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  Victoria Eavis

Victoria Eavis is a fact checker at Lead Stories. She recently graduated from Duke University with a B.A. in Cultural Anthropology. In her last few months at Duke, she was a reporter for a student news site, The 9th Street Journal, that covers the city of Durham, North Carolina. 

Read more about or contact Victoria Eavis

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