More Trouble for PBS: Affleck’s Mother Says She Was Never a Freedom Rider

After a mob attacked a bus with protesters in Alabama in 1961, hundreds more joined the cause. (Bettmann / Corbis). Source.

PBS documentary Finding Your Roots, already under internal review over claims it censored information about Ben Affleck’s slave-owning ancestors out of a recent episode, has again come under fire for inaccuracies after Affleck’s mother denied she was ever involved in the 1964 Freedom Summer.

In Affleck’s segment on the ancestry-themed documentary program, host Henry Louis Gates Jr. tells the actor that his mother, Chris Boldt, was an activist involved in Freedom Summer, the historic voter-registration drive among Mississippi’s African-American community in 1964.

Promotional materials for Affleck’s episode on the PBS website included the line: “Ben Affleck’s mother was a Freedom Rider in 1964.”

“A lynch mob made up of members of the Klan and the local sheriff’s department pulled over three of Ben’s mom’s fellow activists,” Gates tells Affleck on the program. “This is not some abstract threat. The Klan actually murdered these three Freedom Riders. And your mother was there at that time.”

Chris Affleck, now 72, told the Daily Mail this week that her “heart was with” the Freedom Riders, but that she was never a member of the group. According to the outlet, Mrs. Affleck was not even in the South in 1964, but one year later instead…

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