A new paper claiming that the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus was genetically engineered in a laboratory has several red flags. It should not be taken seriously.
No, the novel coronavirus that causes COVID-19 is not a biological weapon. But that doesn't mean the virus didn't escape from a laboratory. A growing body of circumstantial evidence indicates that very well may be what happened.
The American Association for the Advancement of Science is one of the foremost pro-science organizations in the world. Not only does it advocate for good science and science policy, it publishes Science, the prestigious journal read globally by millions. Unfortunately, AAAS has gotten a bit weird in recent months.
Bloomberg's recent hit piece on milk touches upon almost every sensitive issue that worries parents: food, school and their children. Toss in a conspiracy theory about "Big Dairy," and that's how Bloomberg came up with a fear-mongering headline, complete with a disgusting photo that is supposed to make readers feel queasy.
GMOs are completely safe. Insisting otherwise is intellectually indefensible. Yet, the University of California-San Francisco remains a stubborn holdout against reality. UCSF is nothing short of the academic home of the anti-GMO movement. In fact, the university is so dedicated to this position that it openly collaborates with conspiracy theorists.
Peer review is not a corporate conspiracy, even though at least one biology professor thinks so.
There's nothing like a medical scare to bring out the kooks; Zika has done just that. And as facts pile up showing that Zika is causing microcephaly, so do the conspiracy theories. While a new CDC study gives solid evidence connecting the virus to birth defects, others think Bill Gates is a madman out to depopulate the world.
As a group that deals with medical misinformation virtually every day, we at ACSH (falsely) believed that we were inured from the worst scientific and medical garbage out there. We are sorry to say that even we miscalculated the capacity of the American public to fall victim to the most idiotic conspiracy theories.