Fact Check: Audio Sounding Like Biden Advising 'Own A Musket For Home Defense' Is NOT Real

Fact Check

  • by: Dana Ford
Fact Check: Audio Sounding Like Biden Advising 'Own A Musket For Home Defense' Is NOT Real Meme

Is a recording sounding like President Joe Biden telling people to "own a musket for home defense" real? No, that's not true: Although the voice sounds like Biden, video clearly shows he's speaking different words than those heard in the recording. Also, the phrase -- "own a musket for home defense" -- is the start of a well-known copypasta, a chunk of text that is copied and pasted on social media and often turned into memes like this one.

The recording appeared in an Instagram post on February 14, 2023. The caption read:

This is scary coming from a US president..

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

Screen Shot 2023-02-15 at 9.33.39 AM.png

(Source: Instagram screenshot taken on Wed Feb 15 09:33:39 2023 UTC)

In the recording, the voice that sounds like Biden says:

Own a musket for home defense, since that's what the Founding Fathers intended. Four ruffians break into my house. 'What the devil?' As I grab my powdered wig and Kentucky rifle, blow a golf-ball-sized hole through the first man, he's dead on the spot.

Besides the obvious ridiculousness of the text, it's clear from the video the president is not speaking those words as his lips don't form them, nor does his mouth move at the same time the words are heard.

Also, the phrase -- "own a musket for home defense" -- is the start of a well-known copypasta, text that is copied and pasted on social media and often turned into memes. Here's an example from July 2022. In that meme, a dog is "speaking" instead of Biden, but the text is identical. According to Know Your Meme, the meme originated in a 2014 4chan discussion.

Additional Lead Stories fact checks of claims related to President Joe Biden can be found here.

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  Dana Ford

Dana Ford is an Atlanta-based reporter and editor. She previously worked as a senior editor at Atlanta Magazine Custom Media and as a writer/ editor for CNN Digital. Ford has more than a decade of news experience, including several years spent working in Latin America.

Read more about or contact Dana Ford

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