John Quincy Adams’s Wikipedia Page Altered To Make Him A Founding Father

This is just pathetic:

[Bachmann] stated that John Quincy Adams worked tirelessly to end slavery. When George corrected her and informed her that John Quincy Adams was not a Founding Father she insisted that he was.

Now it appears that her supporters have altered Wikipedia to make it appear that John Quincy Adams was a Founding Father, even though he was only a child when his father John Adams, America’s second President, signed the Declaration of Independence.

Here’s a screenshot (click image to enlarge):

It can’t be proven, of course, that the people who tried to make these changes are Bachmann supporters but, really, who else would do it?

 

FILED UNDER: Campaign 2012, Quick Takes, US Politics,
Doug Mataconis
About Doug Mataconis
Doug holds a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May 2010 and contributed a staggering 16,483 posts before his retirement in January 2020.

Comments

  1. Chad S says:

    We’ve always been at war with eurasia.

  2. Boyd says:

    …who else would do it?

    Bachmann dectractors, maybe?

  3. mattb says:

    On the plus side — for all of my issues with it — this is exactly the sort of thing where Wikipedia works best.

    The change will most likely not last (I can’t see the current evidence convincing those editors) and the record of the change (which will keep occurring) will stand (I wonder if the editors will include a “rational” for it… that should be fun) and some time of record of the controversy will be saved on the article’s “Talk” page (the most interesting content on wikipedia is invariable held on the “talk” pages).

    Prediction: the page will be locked down within the next day or so — until this little controversy blows over.

  4. Bleev K says:

    …who else would do it?

    Jesus?

  5. sam says:

    Page looks to have been restored, now.

  6. hey norm says:

    I said on an earlier thread on the same topic…this is part and parcel with the Revere thing. It’s better to rewrite history than to admit your cult leader is an bone-head.

  7. Vast Variety says:

    Her supporters must have gotten a hold of a copy of the Palin play book.

  8. John Peabody says:

    I have no idea about the procedure… But when dealing with such a long-dead figure, why not a) revert the page to what it was a week before issues flared, and b) automatically unlock it in six months. This should eliminate madcap editing.

  9. PD Shaw says:

    Since at least one recognized constitutional historian places John Quincy Adams in the founding generation, as mentioned here, the statement just needs the proper appropriation.

    FWIW/ I don’t consider myself a Bachman supporter, let’s just say she’s no James Garfield. But people get over yourselves.

  10. Gustopher says:

    Perhaps “Founding Child” would be more appropriate.

  11. F.N Kafka says:

    Those who forget history are condemned to rewrite it.

  12. John Peabody says:

    We’ve always been at war with eastasia.

  13. Hey Norm says:

    PD…pls provide a link or a quote with full context. Providing an advertisement doesn’t help. JQA was 7 at the beginning of the Revolutionary War, still clinging to Abegails apron strings.
    Collectively we have spent unknown man-days discussing basic historical facts. While her thought process is both interesting and scary…Far more scary is Bachmann’s stand on the debt ceiling and other policy issues that actually matter.

  14. DMan says:

    I’m starting to shift my stance on this. The whole idea of defining the “founding fathers” seems to be a historical shortcut to help 6th graders understand the basics of American history. These attempts to make it a more inclusive term is just lazy historical accounting.

  15. G.A.Phillips says:

    …who else would do it?

    Barton?

  16. mattb says:

    For those interested enough, there’s already a debate started about this question on the JQA Wiki-discussion page under “Bachman Craziness” — if you want insight into the edit process (and what it will take to make something stick) you should visit it and read the debate:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Talk:John_Quincy_Adams#Bachmann_craziness

    @PD,

    Since at least one recognized constitutional historian places John Quincy Adams in the founding generation, as mentioned here, the statement just needs the proper appropriation.

    As the veteran of wiki-edit debates, I can say with some certainty that a single academic reference will probably not be enough for an editor to ultimately let the change stand.

    @John,
    You’re already being way to complex. The changes will be debated. There’s no need to roll the page that far back — though I’m sure someone is looking into it just in case.

  17. PJ says:

    PJ says:
    Tuesday, June 28, 2011 at 12:16

    @Steven:

    While it is true that JQA was alive during the Revolutionary War era, he was a child during the period, as he was born on Jul 11, 1767. As such, he was not quite nine years old when his father was helping draft the Declaration of Independence. He was in college during the drafting of the Constitution and really cannot be considered as being one of the “Founding Fathers.” His significance as a US politician was clearly in the generation after the Founding.

    Not according to the latest Wikipedia edits… 😉

    I called it. 😉

  18. Rob says:

    Those people are such freaks. They mostly have 90 IQs. Then, they tell lie after lie after lie after lie (since their “followers” also have 80 IQs). Then, when caught in a huge lie or screw-up (such as Paul Revere rode his horse, ringing them bells and warning the British)….they try to re-write history. These people are disgusting, plain and simple.

    Go check Wikipedia now for “FOUNDING FATHERS”. It’s apparently (seems to me) been changed to include John Jay as a founder……and goes on and on about how he fought slavery in New York. That had to have been JUST added by those freaky tea bagging slime. How sick.

  19. Bill Jempty says:

    Doug,

    I like your posts but you really don’t know much about wikipedia. Annonymous posters are responsible for alot of the disinformation on the website. Some of it can be hysterically funny besides hysterically wrong. Go read the bottom entry titled ‘Pilot suicide’ on this page.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=List_of_Mayday_episodes&oldid=173440632

    How many ways that is wrong- The episode doesn’t exist, the crash never happened, the type of aircraft didn’t get into service till 20 years after this is supposed to happen, as described this would have been the worst aviation disaster in history.

    Somebody thought Adams was a founding father believing Bachmann was right and edited it in. That rates a yawn.

  20. Bill,

    I know how Wikipedia works and, as I said at the end of the post, there’s no way to prove who made the edit.

    However, this is the second time something like this has happened. When Sarah Palin told her mangled, nonsensical version of the ride of Paul Revere people magically appeared on Wikipedia to change the entry to conform to her story. Now it’s happened again. The odds that it was just some random Wikipedian seem pretty slim to me

  21. ptfe says:

    I’m a little surprised that Wikipedia’s interface doesn’t highlight items that have been recently (say, in the last few weeks) edited. When you go to Wikipedia, there’s information, but there’s nothing to indicate whether it’s recently updated — in a case like this, a big yellow box around it with a tag that says “RECENTLY ALTERED” would be so obvious to anybody casually scanning the page that they would be able to safely ignore — or just laugh at — it.

    Then again, it’s not my encyclopedia.

  22. Maxwell James says:

    Hey, any day a leading abolitionist gets respect from Republicans is a good day in my book. Even if it is based on a political gaffe.

  23. mattb says:

    @Doug:

    The odds that it was just some random Wikipedian seem pretty slim to me

    To be fair, as long as 4chan and SomethingAwful continue, it is actually possible that this is a trolling effort.

    That said, thanks to IP sniffing (the address is captured with each edit), if this is someway the a concerted effort — be it a bushel of trolls or a bunch o’ conservatives — this sorta thing usual comes out on the “Talk” page.

  24. mattb says:

    BTW as predicted, the page is temporarily locked to anonymous editors:

    Up to this point, what is reported is not actually happening. A few ip editors have been injecting the phrase “founding father”, sometimes as a clear jest and sometimes modifying the father who is considered one of the founders, but most of what’s going on is normal ip vandalism which occurs when an historical figure gets mentioned in the media. Semi-protection is now in force; nobody has been editing the page in any but the most minor ways. Sure would be a good time to get cites on everything and tighten the page up some. BusterD (talk) 23:29, 28 June 2011 (UTC)

  25. PD Shaw says:

    pls provide a link or a quote with full context

    The link was to a book published by a noted constitutional historian, who provides a list of who he considers the Founding Fathers in the appendix. Link

    JQA was 7 at the beginning of the Revolutionary War, still clinging to Abegails apron strings.

    I am not aware of anybody using the term Founding Fathers to indicate participation in the war. Few of the founding father participated in the war; those most known for doing so, Washington and Hamilton are Founding Fathers because of their role as statemen. JQA was in France during most of the war with his father, Jefferson and Franklin.

  26. PD Shaw says:

    Why wouldn’t John Jay be a founder?!?

  27. PD Shaw says:

    John Jay = Not a framer, but delegate to the Continental Congress, president of Congress, Foreign Affairs Secretary for the Confederation, first chief justice of the SCOTUS, and writer of some of the Federalist Papers.

  28. PD Shaw says:

    As the veteran of wiki-edit debates, I can say with some certainty that a single academic reference will probably not be enough for an editor to ultimately let the change stand.

    Bernstein’s listing of Founding Fathers was already on the Wikipedia entry for “Founding Fathers of the United States” as one possible categorization of who are the Founding Fathers. It was yesterday when I checked; it is now; who knows tomorrow?

    I’m not saying any one list is definitive. People are getting incensed about the equivalent of who were the most influential rock ‘n roll artists of the 60s?

  29. mattb says:

    PD:

    Bernstein’s listing of Founding Fathers was already on the Wikipedia entry for “Founding Fathers of the United States” as one possible categorization of who are the Founding Fathers. It was yesterday when I checked; it is now; who knows tomorrow?

    Ironically, having info appear on one Wikipedia page is *not* enough to justify its inclusion on another page. Wikipedia — last I check, only links between pages. It does not cite it’s own content as a source (or necessarily source verification).

  30. Steve Verdon says:

    That one has a higher probability that it was a Bachmann supporter is not at all evidence that it was a Bachmann supporter.

    Everyone gets and F in probabilistic reasoning.

  31. The Q says:

    So, PD shaw, I guess Andrew Jackson was a founding father as well right?

    He, like JQA was born in 1767 and I am sure if the next right wing loon says he’s a founding father all you nuts will come to their defense that of course Andrew Jackson was a founding father.

    And you wonder why we think the right is full of twits and infants?