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Inside the mind of an anti-masker

by Kiana Gomes October 27, 2020
Inside the mind of an anti-masker

How QAnon conspiracies, religion, and anti-maskers come together

Since the pandemic hit North America, many have been criticized for their public refusal to follow government lockdown orders and, most notably, for not wanting to wear masks. These people have been identified as “anti-maskers.”

Some anti-maskers are part of a movement linked to far-right ideologies involving religion and an internet conspiracy group called Qanon.

Qanon is an online conspiracy group that claims that a cabal of sex trafficking satanic pedophiles run the world. The group was started in 2016 on sites like 4chan by an anonymous user. They now have a worldwide following.

Qanon

“There is no second wave. There wasn’t even a first one,” stated Richard Décarie in an interview with The Concordian. Décarie is a former Conservative politician who was banned from running as the Conservative Party leader for saying controversial things like “being gay is a choice.”

Décarie is also a firm believer that the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic is part of Agenda 21, a UN resolution signed by governments in 1992 with an action plan for future sustainable development. QAnon and other conspiracists have included Agenda 21 as part of a complex and elaborate conspiracy theory.

In a nutshell, the conspiracists claim the UN has a plan to impose a “world government” by 2030, meaning they want to get rid of all the sovereign countries and have one global government for the entire world. Essentially, they’re saying the UN and other “deep state” members want a globalized communist government where we would have no individual rights and freedoms.

“The government is favouring large global companies and disfavouring small businesses,” stated Décarie. According to him, this plan has been in the works for years. He claims the COVID-19 pandemic was created to distract us from what’s happening: a world takeover which is only advantageous for the “world’s elite” and big corporations.

Décarie is also avidly against wearing a mask. He claims that “Wearing a mask is a sign of submission.” Décarie is convinced that masks are a control mechanism to see how submissive the population is to the government. Meanwhile, the CDC and other scientific organizations provide significant data showing that wearing a mask can reduce the spread of any virus, including COVID-19.

With no scientific evidence to justify his arguments, Décarie still assumes that he is doing the right thing by spreading his message.

Many other conspiracists like Décarie are sharing their theories on social media platforms, believing they are doing the “right thing.” Facebook, in particular, recently banned all QAnon-related content from its platform.

Even when asked if he’s a “conspiracy theorist,” Décarie instantly said he is a “truth finder,” a label consistent with the QAnon narrative.

Décarie believes we will find a way out of the deep state’s plan and our “faith in God will make us see what they are doing and they will not succeed.”

Religious Matters 

It’s no surprise that Décarie is very religious. Many unsuspecting Christians go down the “rabbit hole,” a term used to describe the altered state of those who go so far into the QAnon conspiracies that it takes over their lives.

Many religious leaders in the United States, such as Danny Silk, have been preaching QAnon-related narratives to their followers and encouraging them to vote for Trump. However, this isn’t only limited to the USA; some Canadian ministers and preachers have also been preaching similar narratives, such as Pastor Jean-Francois Denis.

Many unsuspecting Christians are vulnerable to following QAnon because the interpretation of the conspiracy theories can be similar to their beliefs and interpretations of the Bible.

In the USA, there are many fundamentalist Christians. Some fundamentalist Christians believe that everything written in the bible is factual and true. Many still believe in concepts like creationism, which has since been proven incorrect by scientific evidence that supports the theory of evolution.

In this current pandemic, some fundamentalist Christians support QAnon’s theories, which, like their own religious beliefs, are contrary to what is proven by science.

Why would Christians start believing in science at a time like this where their lives have been turned upside down and everything is so uncertain?

In a word, comfort.

By maintaining their beliefs in spite of scientific evidence, they gain comfort in these turbulent times. It’s easier to adhere to a narrative like QAnon, which promotes unproven theories that they assume are correct. Based on their interpretations, some even believe the Bible predicted COVID-19.

In one of his videos, Denis stated to “Never let anyone take away your right to question things, be critical, and find the truth.”

Although critical thinking is good, and we shouldn’t always believe everything we hear or read when it comes to public health… wear your mask, wash your hands, and stay home!

 

Feature graphic by @the.beta.lab

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