“The object of life is not to be on the side of the majority but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane.” – Marcus Aurelius
The spread of SARS-CoV-2 isn’t just causing illness, death, and grave economic consequences, it is also birthing a vast array of conspiracy theories. These theories include:
- The roll-out of 5G technology is causing the spread of the virus. This has led to over 30 incidents of arson and vandalism on cell phone towers.
- Over 30% of the U.S. population believes that the virus was created in a lab. By analyzing the genome of the virus, scientists are sure that the virus is natural and originated in bats. Note, however, that there might be some truth that the virus originated (but was not intentionally created) in a lab in Wuhan that was studying the virus. See that news reported here.
- SARS-CoV-2 was spread by the government to distract us from a pending collision of an asteroid with the earth that will end civilization.
- Kooky home remedies that supposedly cure COVID-19 have spread across the globe including: breathing hot air from a hairdryer is a cure; televangelist Jim Bakker has been selling a solution that he claims is a cure; eating garlic will fend off COVID-19; exposing yourself to the sun is a cure; drinking alcohol prevents COVID-19; taking a hot bath prevents COVID-19; drinking cow urine prevents infection; drinking chlorine dioxide is a cure. (None of these “cures” work and some are dangerous.)
- Streaming services such as Disney+ and Netflix released the virus intentionally to help their businesses.
- Professor Chandra Wickramasinghe of the Buckingham Centre for Astrobiology has alleged that a meteor that exploded over China in October released viral particles that caused the pandemic.
- Greta Thunberg Caused Covid-19 To Help With Climate Change
- COVID-19 is no worse than getting a cold and is being over-hyped by the liberals and the media in order to spread bureaucracy and destroy capitalism.
- Hydroxychloroquine is a cure for COVID-19 and is not being used in order to harm President Trump politically.
Wow. One of the top clicked IFODs is one from 2018 titled Why Do So Many People Believe in Conspiracy Theories? which sheds some light on why people love to believe in conspiracies.
COVID-19 is providing especially fertile ground for conspiracy theories because:
1. There is a lot of uncertainty and unknowns about the virus and COVID-19. In absence of solid information rumor, conjecture and wild speculation fill the void.
2. In addition to the health “pandemic”, the World Health Organization has dubbed the spread of misinformation as an “infodemic“ which they define as “an over-abundance of information – some accurate and some not – that makes it hard for people to find trustworthy sources and reliable guidance when they need it.” A major difference between COVID-19 and prior pandemics such as SARS and MERS is that social media is much more prominent and is being used to spark conspiracies and misinformation.
More than ever, it is important that we all rely on legitimate sources of information about COVID-19 such as the CDC, the WHO, respected universities and media that engage in fact-checking. Unfortunately, we’re seeing the effects of attacks on the media and the public’s skepticism of science and experts coming home to roost; distrust of legitimate news sources and science is helping the spread of misinformation that is dangerous.
I resort to a simple lesson in Critical Thinking, to wit:
You cannot name a young, healthy, doctor or nurse who died from treating patients with the seasonal flu.
But young, healthy, doctors & nurses & firemen & paramedics & cops catch Covid-19 and die.
Surely, you understand that difference.
Hello. I’m a young university prof. from Iran who has just discovered your blog. I just wanted to thank you for all the hard work you put into producing such interesting articles! Searching for “Brandolini’s Law” got me here, and then I delved deeper and found one interesting piece after another! Thanks again.
Thanks for subscribing and connecting!
Carol Baskin created the virus.
Oxford’s evidence-based medicine group is a favorite resource: https://www.cebm.net/covid-19/
Super interesting. I’ve heard the cold one and the one about it being created in a lab. All the other ones were new!