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Quote wrongly attributed to Mahatma Gandhi

October 5, 2018 GMT

CLAIM: Gandhi said: “First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win.” 

AP ASSESSMENT: False. An image circulating online falsely attributes the quote to Mahatma Gandhi, the Indian activist who fought for independence from British rule. 

THE FACTS: Kit Miller, director of the M.K. Gandhi Institute for Nonviolence in Rochester, N.Y., told The Associated Press in an email that while the quote is frequently attributed to Gandhi, “he was not the original person who uttered that remark.” 

Nicholas Klein, a trade union activist, said something similar in a 1918 speech, saying, “First they ignore you. Then they ridicule you. And then they attack you and want to burn you. And then they build monuments to you,” according to a transcript from the Amalgamated Clothing Workers of America convention. 


Bernie Sanders and Sarah Palin have fallen for this misquote, all three posting it on social media. 

Here’s more information on Facebook’s fact-checking program: 


The Associated Press reviewed this story after it was surfaced to third-party fact checkers as part of an initiative with Facebook to assess the accuracy of news content.