Let’s Talk About Joe Biden Straight Up Lying about Getting Arrested in South Africa

Joe Biden meme
Oh no, Joe, they meme'd you!

Joe Biden is many things, but “an honest man” increasingly seems like it’s not one of them.

Need examples? How about him plagiarizing a speech in his 1988 presidential campaign? Or the dubious and kinda debunked story about the soldier who refused a medal? Who could forget the tale of the time Joe Biden confronted Corn Pop, or that time he definitely marched for civil rights even though it seems like he didn’t?

Joe Biden really is an uncle; his life is full of half-remembered half-truths that fall apart with the slightest amount of scrutiny, the type of shit that you remember fondly as a kid that becomes more icky and frustrating the older you get. I don’t want to call Joe Biden a lyin’ ass liar who lies, but he’s definitely lyin’-ass-liar-who-lies adjacent.

The latest gaffe from Joe Biden comes as he tries to rally support in his firewall state of South Carolina, where he’s hoping to come up with a big win that can reset the narrative and maybe get frightened Democratic donors who have abandoned him for other candidates to open the monetary flood gates and help him make a push to remove Bernie from front runner status.

From Business Insider;

“This day, 30 years ago, Nelson Mandela walked out of prison and entered into discussions about apartheid,” Biden told an audience in South Carolina about two weeks ago, the New York Times reported.

“I had the great honor of meeting him. I had the great honor of being arrested with our UN ambassador on the streets of Soweto trying to get to see him on Robbens Island,” Biden said.

Wow. Joe Biden. Arrested in South Africa during apartheid. A friend to the great Nelson Mandela. It’d be enough to inspire any African American to vote for Joe Biden. You know, if there was any fucking basis in reality.

“When I said ‘arrested,’ I meant I was not able, I was not able to move,” Biden told CNN. “The cops, the Afrikaners, didn’t let me go with them, they made me stay where I was. I wasn’t arrested, I was stopped. I was not able to move where I wanted to go.”

So what’s the truth here? Did Biden really just use the wrong word? Or did he out and out lie to an African-American audience to gain some street cred. Survey says…lyin’ ass liar who lies tells a lie.

The fact that this pattern of “repeating a half-truth until finally getting caught” keeps happening with Joe Biden is disturbing in and of itself. The fact that he so rarely actually gets called on the fact that he keeps lying about this stuff is frustrating, especially for a media culture that seems to be desperate to start writing about Joe Biden’s electoral comeback.

Biden is leading in South Carolina polling, particularly with older black voters who still have landlines and answer phone calls from random ass white folks asking them invasive questions about their personal politics. He will probably win, and he will win in spite of showing time (and time, and time) again that he can’t win an election. And he will win in spite of repeatedly showing his ass in a naked attempt to appeal to people and seem down to Earth and homey when he’s been in public office longer than most of the people who contribute to this site have been alive.

Even the best politicians embellish (or straight up lie) to spit shine their resumes a bit. But either Joe Biden is so addled and old that he literally can not remember basic, formative facts of his life, or he’s lying to an audience who’s main reason for voting for him is their belief he will bring back a bygone era that probably wasn’t as great for them as they remember.

One of these things is sad, one of these things is disgusting, and both of them should be disqualifying when you’re running to be the Democratic nominee. But we are deep into post-fact Americas heyday, so Biden’s misremembered trips down memory lane will continue to get treated as cute instead, well…lying ass lies.

About KC Complains A Lot 135 Articles
KC Complains A Lot is another refugee from Deadspin. He enjoys writing and not caving to pressure from herbs.


  1. *shrugs* dont get me wrong… i agree with you
    but i dont think things like truth or facts or feasability matter much in elections over on your end of the pond…

    not saying its different side of the pond tho..
    anyhoo… i think any politicians name and honest man should never be used in the same same sentence…

  2. It seems to be White Man Syndrome inspired by Forrest Gump that every last one of them tore down the Berlin Wall with their own hands or came under fire from some scary brown people once in a war zone.

    Joe Biden can be boiled down to this quote of his, “I’m not sorry for anything that I have ever done.”

    It’s pathological. “It’s YOU who remembered wrong. And if you bought my lie? I’ve created an alternative reality and am right. I certainly can’t be wrong, so I guess who does that leave as the wrongest? You.”

    Biden would have been better off just staying retired and enjoying his twilight years where he could tell these stories and smell women’s hair in private.

  3. This reminds me of how I ran into a clusterfuck of an old friend whom I’d heard went sober, and she was wasted, and kept saying she was “63 days sober” – as in, she WAS sober for 63 days.

    I do not think you are using that phrase correctly, Jan.

    • Unfortunately, her type view it as an accomplishment. “I might be drinking NOW! But I could stop if I wanted to! In fact, I was not drinking this morning. Are you trying to tear me down?!”

      So no one is allowed to tell Jan/Joe Biden anything at any time.

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