Breaking Down The Controversial Crack Pipe Funding “Fact Checks”

OPINION | This article contains political commentary which reflects the author's opinion.

Buckle up, because this one is a long one. I feel like it’s important to break down the methods of “fact checkers” to help people to be able recognize their manipulation and see through it.

Back in February, I wrote an article about the Biden Administration awarding a $30 million grant to provide free drug kits, including crack pipes, to drug addicts as part of their “equity” agenda. My article, along with all the other articles on the subject written by other organizations, were hit with multiple “fact checks.

The censorship from the “fact checks” was so heavy that we had to totally rewrite the article and title to avoid being essentially rendered mute online. Algorithms on various sites, especially social media sites, are set to not only censor specific articles deemed by “fact checkers” to be “false,” “misleading,” or “missing context,” but they are also set to censor any accounts or sites which are responsible for posting that content, including all their other non-fact-checked content. Meaning that a single “fact check” could censor days or weeks worth of other content.

But in this case, it was all accurate. The “fact checks” were not only wrong, but the information was intentionally manipulated in order to achieve the “false” label they needed to censor the content. At the time, I wrote a follow-up article about Snopes doing a “fact check” in which they confirmed the entire story before labeling the entire story “Mostly False.” But I want to break down these “fact checks” for you so you can see how they play this game.

Lead Stories immediately “fact checked” my articles, saying,

Fackt Check: Biden Administration Is NOT Funding ‘Crack Pipes, Heroin’ For Drug Use.”

First of all, I never said anything about them funding heroin, so why am I being “fact checked” for something I never said? If someone else said it, fact check them for that. But I never did. As for the crack pipes, I asserted that the money was funding drug kits which do include crack pipes, and thus funding crack pipes, but not exclusively funding crack pipes, which is what they insinuate that I said. They also said that “the Secretary of Health and Human Services declared none of the federal funds for harm reduction programs for drug addicts can be used to provide crack pipes.” Well, this is interesting considering what’s actually included in many of the “safe smoking kits” distributed by “health-focused nonprofits and government agencies–the types of groups eligible to receive funding, starting this month, from the Biden administration’s $30 million grant program.” Spoiler alert: it was crack pipes.

PolitiFact said,

“Conservative commentators recently set off a firestorm by accusing the federal government of spending $30 million on crack pipes. But that isn’t what’s happening.”

Actually, that’s not what conservative commentators said. At least not me. I said the federal government was spending $30 million dollars on drug kits with crack pipes for distribution to drug addicts, thus they are funding free crack pipes. I didn’t say were purchasing $30 million worth of crack pipes.

USA Today said,

“Fact check: False claim that Biden Administration is distributing $30M of ‘crack pipes.'”

Again, no, that’s not what I said, yet I got hit with this “fact check.” I never said they are distributing $30M worth of crack pipes. I said they were awarding a $30M grant to fund the distribution of drug kits which include crack pipes, thus funding the distribution of crack pipes.

CNN said,

“Fact Check: Biden Admin isn’t funding crack pipes.”

I mean, if there is even a single crack pipe in a single “safe smoking kit” or “drug kit” provided by the organizations receiving grant money, then the Biden Admin did fund crack pipes.

And Reuters said,

“Fact Check-U.S. government officials did not say crack pipes would be distributed in safer drug kits.”

Now, this one is tricky. They are fact checking whether or not a U.S. government official said that crack pipes would be distributed in the drug kits, not whether any of the money from the $30M grant would go toward crack pipes in drug kits. Part of the original report by the Washington Free Beacon included a quote allegedly by a “spokesman for the DHHS,” regarding the grant funding “smoking kits/supplies” for drug addicts, including for crack cocaine, heroin, and other illicit drug use. Now, if this “spokesman” statement to the Washington Free Beacon was legit, then Reuters carefully covered their bases by “fact checking” whether or not “U.S. government officials” said that crack pipes would be distributed. See how tricky that is?

Of course, the Washington Free Beacon, who broke the original story, probably took the hardest hit. So they decided to continue to verify the information, and they appear to have been vindicated. They obtained some of these “safe smoking kits” from Boston, Washington D.C., Baltimore, New York City, and Richmond, all of which included crack pipes.

“While the contents of safe-smoking kits vary from one organization to another—and while those from some organizations may not contain crack pipes—all of the organizations we visited made crack pipes as well as paraphernalia for the use of heroin, cocaine, and crystal methamphetamine readily available without requiring or offering rehabilitation services, suggesting that pipes are included in many if not most of the kits distributed across the country. All of the centers we visited are run by health-focused nonprofits and government agencies—the types of groups eligible to receive funding, starting this month, from the Biden administration’s $30 million grant program.”

To be clear, the $30M grant money has not been distributed yet, so these specific drug kits were not made using money from the $30M grant, but these are the harm reduction organizations eligible to receive that funding, and they are providing the “safe smoking kits” or “safe drug kits” intended in the grant, and yes, they do include crack pipes. Now, perhaps Health and Human Services will be extra diligent in making sure that these organizations STOP including crack pipes in their safe smoking kits, and ensuring that not a dime of federal funding is used to purchase the crack pipes usually included in the kits, but I sure wouldn’t hold my breath.

Imagine if these “fact checkers” spent this kind of time and mental energy checking the actual facts. Imagine if they invested this kind of effort into “fact checking” the Hunter Biden laptop story or any number of other “debunked conspiracy theories” that have turned out to be completely true. They go to great lengths to manipulate you by manipulating the information they allow you to see. I desperately want people to learn to see their manipulation so they can see through it.

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