13:03 GMT19 January 2021
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    Just hours after a deadly synagogue shooting in Pennsylvania on Friday in which 11 were killed, US President Donald Trump offered a whopping lie to fans as a means of avoiding the cancellation of his evening political rally in Murphysboro, Illinois.

    In justifying a Saturday political rally only hours after the deadliest anti-Semitic tragedy in US history, Trump avowed to his audience that, following the terrorist attacks of 9/11, the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) was open the very next day.

    Except that after 9/11, the world's biggest stock exchange — as well as the #2 NASDAQ and the entire global stock exchange network — remained shuttered for an entire week, cautiously opening again only on September 17, 2001.

    "With what happened early today, that horrible, horrible attack in Pittsburgh, I was saying maybe I should cancel both this and that," the US president commented to fans at the carefully staged political rally on Saturday afternoon, according to Slate.com.

    "And then I said to myself, I remembered Dick Russell, a friend of mine, great guy, he headed up the New York Stock Exchange on September 11th, and the New York Stock Exchange was open the following day," Trump declared, cited by the Washington Post.

    But his assertion is not anywhere close to what actually happened.

    Not only did the exchange stay closed for an additional six days — the longest time the markets have been shut since 1933 — Trump's aforementioned great friend Dick Russell, a Georgia Senator who advocated racial segregation, was hardly the head of the world's largest stock exchange, as that position was at the time held by one Dick Grasso.

    Trump's fantastic turns of truth-twisting at the rally did not go unnoticed.

    "It's easy to figure this out using Google," observed Glenn Kessler of the Washington Post.

    "There's even a whole Wikipedia page," he added, cited by Alternet.org.

    In a Friday report, the New York Magazine summed up what many on both sides of the political fence have been thinking regarding the US president's erratic proclamations to his voter base.

    We "implore the president to avoid praising political violence, or making incendiary, unsubstantiated allegations about his political opponents, because doing so poses risks to public safety, while fulfilling no civic function," according to the NYmag.com report.


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