The coronavirus has overtaken the news cycle in a relatively short period. Yes, we should stop hoarding masks. And no, it’s not fake news that every drugstore has seemingly run out of hand sanitizer (so if you find some, don’t hoard). It’s even a challenge to find toilet paper at Costco. But where did the virus come from?
At the moment, no one knows with 100% certainty. But conspiracy theories continue to ravage the internet. Here are the weirdest ones that are sure to make your blood boil.
The Virus Was Predicted in a 1981 Book
Reuters reported that social media posts are featuring the cover of The Eyes of Darkness by Dean Koontz, which allegedly describes the coronavirus.
The Eyes of Darkness by Dean Koontz allegedly describes the coronavirus.
A February 17th Facebook post by Kat Hooker, which currently has more than 32k shares, shows an underlined passage in the book which reads, “In around 2020 a severe pneumonia-like will spread throughout the globe…”
Similar posts were also shared on Twitter. One post from @DarrenPlymouth has even been re-tweeted more than 1.3k times.
If you want to feel frustrated with humanity, all you have to do is read the comments. Or perhaps Dean Koontz is the next Tyler Henry. Who knows?
Coronavirus Was Released from a Bioweapon Lab in China
Once the virus started becoming international news, China's officials insisted that they had no idea where it could have started! Except that the day after making this announcement, the Chinese Ministry of Science and Technology issued a directive to all government labs entitled: "Instructions on strengthening biosecurity management in microbiology labs that handle advanced viruses like the novel coronavirus." I mean, it could be coincidence, but it sure sounds like there is a possibility they believe it was leaked from one of their labs.
It sure sounds like there is a possibility they believe it was leaked from one of their labs.
And it doesn't stop there! Rumors began circulating in February that the US actually had a patent out on this strain of the Novel Coronavirus, and that it was a case of bioweapon espionage on behalf of China. It wouldn't be the first time China has stolen US technology.
COVID-19 Came from Bats at an Animal Market
It’s safe to assume most of us know it’s best to avoid bats as a general rule because they transmit rabies. Also, bats are terrifying.
While this theory can’t be entirely proved (or disproved), here’s what we do know. Business Insider reports that it was determined that the SARS outbreak in 2003 came from bats. SARS and this coronavirus are similar in several ways, including they’re both zoonotic diseases. This means humans can get them from animals.
Coronavirus is a zoonotic disease, which means humans can get it from animals.
Both live and dead animals are sold in Wuhan’s markets, with very little regulation, so experts feel these are prime conditions to allow the virus to jump from species to species. These markets are nothing like your Sunday farmer’s market where you can buy a cup of artisanal cold brew along with kale and fresh fish, and where organic really means organic!
Cleaning Product Companies Had Inside Information So They Could Profit from the Outbreak
The EPA recently released a list of cleaning products that kill coronavirus. This includes things you might have already had at home prior to the outbreak such as cans of Lysol spray and Clorox Wipes. These labels even state that they kill human coronavirus. One of the biggest conspiracies going around the internet is that these companies knew about coronavirus prior to the outbreak, so they could capitalize on it.
It’s easy to understand during a time of hysteria that many people could believe this, especially if you have a Costco-sized pack of wipes that’s been sitting under your kitchen sink since last summer. And anyone believing this is completely correct. Coronaviruses have existed all along.
According to FactCheck, coronavirus is a type of virus, which is categorized by the way it looks under a microscope - a crown-like shape. SARS is a coronavirus. So are some strains of the common cold. You might have had a coronavirus before this outbreak and not even known it.
Coronavirus is a type of virus, which is categorized by the way it looks under a microscope - a crown-like shape.
The confusion lies in the fact that the media (myself included) is using the generic term coronavirus to refer to COVID-19, which is the current strain we’re all trying to avoid exposure to right now.
You Can Kill Coronavirus by Snorting Cocaine
And now for a really crazy party trick...There’s a big rumor going around that snorting cocaine is an easy way to kill coronavirus.
On February 3rd, Bizzie Osykoya tweeted a photo of a news ticker that reads “Cocaine Kills Coronavirus.” With nearly 3k re-tweets, it’s easy to understand how this misinformation started to trend. However, the French Government recently made a statement refuting the rumor.
Drinking Bleach Cures Coronavirus
Shots anyone? You better make it shots of Tito’s (which, if you’re wondering, isn’t a good ingredient for homemade hand sanitizer).
On January 23rd, Jordan Sather tweeted that bleach kills coronavirus. And while many media outlets have refuted his claim, Sather still hasn’t changed his mind. On March 10th, he tweeted, “The EPA has [bleach] registered to sanitize hospitals and restaurants...there are patents for using it to kill viral infections…”
Drinking bleach does not stop the virus, and it will 100% make your throat hurt.
While bleach is used to sanitize surfaces, experts have spoken out telling people not to drink bleach. Drinking bleach does not stop the virus, and it will 100% make your throat hurt.
The mass public hysteria over the virus isn’t doing anyone any good. So, it’s best to follow precautions as much as possible. Avoid unnecessary travel. Wash your hands for at least 20 seconds (shouldn’t we all be doing this anyway?) or use hand sanitizer. If you see someone coughing violently in public, it’s probably best to cross the street.