It is difficult to overstate the potential damage that an ineffective or unsafe coronavirus vaccine could inflict on confidence in public health institutions. Conspiracy theories already abound and would multiply further.
Conspiracy theories are like herpes. Once a person is exposed, he's infected for life and cannot be cured. Worse, the patient is vulnerable to more conspiracy theories.
Bill Gates, perhaps the greatest philanthropist the world has ever known, has become the target of unhinged, self-contradictory conspiracy theories that are disturbingly popular.
We normally butt heads with the Center for Science in the Public Interest. But its recent attack on Joseph Mercola's magical COVID cures deserves praise. CSPI could be a great organization if it focused more on eliminating quack medicine and less on labeling bacon as causing cancer.
The group Americans for Responsible Technology declares 5G to be unsafe. This fringe anti-technology movement is gaining momentum, thanks to activists, their accomplices in the media, and Russian propaganda outlets like RT.
Discredited journalist and conspiracy theorist Paul Thacker, who became infamous for spreading disinformation about GMOs and biotech scientists, is back. This time, he's ranting about 5G. But it seems he could only get his most recent work published in a foreign language with the help of a collaborator, Dutch journalist Jannes van Roermund.
Children's Health Defense says governments and corporations are using the coronavirus (SARS-COV-2) to advance a "global immunization agenda." The anti-vaccine group claims that our leaders just needed the right pandemic as a pretext to goad us into getting vaccines. This is a clever story. It's also false.
In the Digital Age, we have access to more information than at any time in human history. But that doesn't stop the spread of conspiracy theories. Here are the best (worst?) ones involving the new coronavirus and the disease COVID-19.
There are two false narratives emerging on social media that need to be addressed. The first is that the virus is a hoax. The second is that the U.S. is "the next Italy." Both are wrong.
The Fox News host says cell phones cause cancer and the Wuhan coronavirus (COVID-19) might have escaped from a biological weapons lab. Both claims are ridiculous.
KCAL9, the CBS affiliate in Los Angeles, invited conspiracy theorist Zen Honeycutt -- an anti-GMO, anti-vaccine, conspiracy-mongering snake oil saleswoman and founder of Moms Across America -- to discuss children's health.
In the past few months, Scientific American published an article that attacked biotechnology, another that repeated conspiratorial nonsense about 5G technology, and a third that went on an anti-medical rant aimed at a high-profile gynecologist.