There are a lot of good reasons for advancing free speech because it's an essential tool for holding powerful interests accountable. But not all arguments protected by free speech are truthful or accurate.

One popular but incorrect case is what Joe Biden said during his acceptance speech at the Democratic National Convention. The former vice president parroted the falsehood that President Donald Trump called white supremacists "very fine people" after the tragic Charlottesville, Virginia protest of 2017. He went on to say, "You remember what the president said when asked? He said there were quote, 'very fine people on both sides.'"

Biden is insinuating that the Trump presidency is an instrument for racism. What does this mean for Americans who support the president? Thankfully, there are real moments of journalism when sunlight still is the best disinfectant for false information.

The British Broadcasting Corporation fact-checked Biden's remarks and certified that the president did say the words "very fine people," but it provided a few words that followed to give the full context, and a few words go quite a long way.

President Trump said, "You had some very bad people in that group, but you also had people that were very fine people, on both sides." But then the BBC shared that Mr. Trump also said, "I'm not talking about the neo-Nazis and the white nationalists, because they should be condemned totally." But because of Biden piecemealing words, we were fleeced.

In an attempt to paint Trump as one who fuels racial animosity, Biden has perpetuated dishonest claims to divide and separate the American people.

Phil Paleologos is the host of The Phil Paleologos Show on 1420 WBSM New Bedford. He can be heard weekdays from 6 a.m. to 10 a.m. Contact him at and follow him on Twitter @PhilPaleologos. The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of the author.

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