About Conspiracy Theories

This post is not about a specific conspiracy theory; it is more about the people who seem to be the most susceptible to them. I simply can’t understand how so many people so easily fall down the same rabbit hole! I gleaned most of the info from a recent New York Time article. Click here to see the whole article. Here is a snippet from it:

More than 1 in 3 Americans believe that the Chinese government engineered the coronavirus as a weapon, and another third are convinced that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has exaggerated the threat of Covid-19 to undermine President Trump.

But they underscore a moment when a particular brand of conspiracy theory is emerging in the mainstream: A belief that the “official story” is in fact a Big Lie, being told by powerful, shadowy interests.

Before I continue with this thought, I want to give you a core reason behind this post. I truly want to believe that most US citizens are rational 21st century thinkers. But given our current times maybe I can’t say that for my generation anymore. 🤪 Most of us can easily see the difference between fact and fiction. We believe that science has fundamentally changed our world in our lifetime to give us a better world than our grandparents could even imagine. Sadly, there are so many things that are happening currently that utterly disappoint me with this view of the world. The widespread acceptance of conspiracy theories is one of them.

Now, back to the matter at hand. It is estimated that around 50% of Americans firmly believe in at least one conspiracy theory that has no basis in fact. Why?? The article says that many of the conspiracy theory believers are solitary, anxious figures, moody and detached, including many who are older and living alone who suffer from a “personality disorder”. That may be true but does it really include almost 50% of our population?

The traits of many who believe in conspiracy theories are people who are fixated on entitlement, self-centered impulsivity, coldheartedness. Many of these descriptions describe a form of schizophrenia. It’s a pattern of magical thinking that goes well beyond garden variety superstition and usually comes across socially as disjointed, uncanny or “off.” I don’t know about you but I can clearly see the above characteristic was playing out in the 2016 and the 2020 elections.

Are we really becoming a world that needs regular visits to a psychiatrist couch? I hope not, but we will see…

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