Shaking it up

I commented on President Biden’s April 14 speech at North Carolina A & T in “Biden reaches out.” I watched the whole thing on a local news video posted to YouTube and linked to the C-SPAN video of the speech. Commenting on his remarks, I was relegated to the video because the White House itself posted no transcript. I concluded my comments with a look at the viral video of Biden turning to his right and shaking nobody’s hand. He appeared to be lost in space.

Now Snopes and others purport to fact-check the tweet and find it to have misrepresented what happened. Reviewing the scene from the angle provided by the C-SPAN video, Snopes suggests that Biden may have been gesturing to the crowd, or something: “We saw him gesture at the crowd. We saw him turn toward another group of people. We saw him turn to the back of the stage. Then we saw him walk off the stage where he appeared to talk to someone in the crowd.”

That is what they saw. They leave open the possibility that you might see something else. They make no definitive declaration. They advise readers how to take in such videos. It’s a teachable moment!

The International Business Times is more decisive. IBT’s Steven Klein asserts: “[I]t becomes clear that Biden wasn’t shaking hands with thin air. In fact, he was gesturing at the people on the right and eventually behind him who were cheering. He even gestures toward the crowd on the left side of the dais, but it is covered by a mic stand.”

You be the judge.

Notice: All comments are subject to moderation. Our comments are intended to be a forum for civil discourse bearing on the subject under discussion. Commenters who stray beyond the bounds of civility or employ what we deem gratuitous vulgarity in a comment — including, but not limited to, “s***,” “f***,” “a*******,” or one of their many variants — will be banned without further notice in the sole discretion of the site moderator.