If you’ve ever wondered how real people would react to an alien invasion, the coronavirus pandemic is providing some clues.
We had, first, the crisis building up quietly against the backdrop of everything else that was going on at the time. Sports, movies, politics and the election all kept going while the story started to gain traction in the background. People were mostly oblivious to the threat.
Then the crisis breaks out. Scary headlines splash worldwide. March Madness canceled! Stranger Things delayed! Leaders start to take action, and others start sniping at them. The public mostly reacts to the threat based on the leaders’ public statements. You want me to Netflix and chill? M’kay, I can do that. What’s this tiger thing I keep hearing about?
Now we’re at the loony conspiracy stage. Either the threat isn’t real, or if it is real, it’s related to some other thing that’s also controversial but entirely irrelevant to the crisis at hand.
5G cell coverage, which makes communication a whole lot faster, is also controversial. Coronavirus is this mysterious thing that’s wrecking people’s health and the global economy. It’s forcing us all to stay home, locked in with our weirdest thoughts.
So I give you…the “5G is making coronavirus worse” conspiracy theory. And it’s cuckoo.
Telecom masts that enable the next generation of wireless communication were set on fire in the U.K. in recent days, apparently by people motivated by a theory that the tech helps spread the coronavirus. Investors are taking note.
“Most will laugh at this scientifically unproven claim, but we should not underestimate public worry about potentially adverse health impacts of 5G due to radiation, and thus a possible drag on the 5G progress in democratic countries,” analysts led by Edison Lee at Jefferies Financial Group Inc. said in a note on Sunday.
Look, people are getting bored being cooped up watching their savings dwindle while they occasionally foray outside to fight for toilet paper. We’ve all watched Tiger King and we’re past its train-wrecks and its memes now. I get it. What I don’t really get is why celebrities think pushing this nonsense is a good career move for them. Such as actor Woody Harrelson:
Former “Cheers” TV star Woody Harrelson recently posted a report “about the negative effects of 5G” and its supposed role in the coronavirus pandemic to his more than 2 million Instagram followers.
“I haven’t fully vetted it I find it very interesting,” he wrote of the report claiming that “5G radiation” is “exacerbating” the contagion’s spread and making it more lethal.
“I haven’t fully vetted it…” Just how would Woody go about vetting whether the radio waves emanating from 5G towers make a virus more or less virulent in the human body? Maybe I’m bored too, but I’d really like to see how that works. There’s even a way to tie Joe Exotic into it. Let’s get it on Netflix, stat!
Woody Harrelson can be joined in the lab by rapper M.I.A.
Singer M.I.A. has also repeatedly tweeted about her fears over 5G — recently saying that even if it does not cause COVID-19, it “can confuse or slow the body down in healing process as body is learning to cope with new signals wavelength s frequency etc @ same time as Cov.”
The “Paper Planes” rapper even posted a photo of one of the burning towers.
“People in England are setting fire to it. They should just turn it off till after the pandemic!” she wrote.
Welcome to Crazy Town. People are setting fire to these things because science classes failed them, deductive reasoning is all but dead, and because celebrities (who are now just about our only remaining authority figures) are giving this garbage its day in the sun.
For what it’s worth, Iran is one of the world’s hardest-hit COVID-19 hot zones. There’s no 5G there. Now, we can either let Woody Harrelson loose to figure this out, or we can just note that the virus originated in China (are we still allowed to say that?), Iran and China are allies and massive trading partners, so there’s a lot of travel between the two. Does Occam’s Razor work anymore?
Bryan Preston is the author of Hubble’s Revelations: The Amazing Time Machine and Its Most Important Discoveries.