The Wall Street Journal has reported that Ben Carson’s account of a hoax at Yale University, which he wrote about in his 1990 memoir “Gifted Hands,” isn’t true, but Carson has produced evidence to prove otherwise.
Here’s what Reid Epstein reported in the Wall Street Journal:
In his 1990 autobiography, ‘Gifted Hands,’ Mr. Carson writes of a Yale psychology professor who told Mr. Carson, then a junior, and the other students in the class—identified by Mr. Carson as Perceptions 301—that their final exam papers had ‘inadvertently burned,’ requiring all 150 students to retake it. The new exam, Mr. Carson recalled in the book, was much tougher. All the students but Mr. Carson walked out.
‘The professor came toward me. With her was a photographer for the Yale Daily News who paused and snapped my picture,’ Mr. Carson wrote. ‘“A hoax,” the teacher said. ‘We wanted to see who was the most honest student in the class.”’ Mr. Carson wrote that the professor handed him a $10 bill.
No photo identifying Mr. Carson as a student ever ran, according to the Yale Daily News archives, and no stories from that era mention a class called Perceptions 301. Yale Librarian Claryn Spies said Friday there was no psychology course by that name or class number during any of Mr. Carson’s years at Yale.
Carson issued the following response on his Facebook page:
On Saturday a reporter with the Wall Street Journal published a story that my account of being the victim of a hoax at Yale where students were led to believe the exams they had just taken were destroyed and we needed to retake the exam was false. The reporter claimed that no evidence existed to back up my story. Even went so far as to say the class didn’t exist.
Well here is the student newspaper account of the incident that occurred on January 14, 1970.
Will an apology be coming. I doubt it.
He also produced evidence that the class actually existed.
Allow me also to do the research for the Wall Street Journal reporter.
Here is a syllabus for the class you claim never existed.
Still waiting on the apology.
While there is no evidence of a published photograph, this doesn’t prove Carson wasn’t involved in the incident. Photographers take photos all the time that their editors choose not to use. Carson never says his photograph actually ran in the school’s newspaper, only that the photographer snapped his picture.
There has been no correction of the Wall Street Journal article that claims the class or the incident never happened. As Carson asked at a press conference on Friday, will the same kind of scrutiny that the press has given Carson be given to Hillary Clinton?