Today, I join the nut-cases. I hope our relationship survives, yours and mine. A couple of months ago I unfollowed a blogger. She wrote inventive poetry and gut-wrenching prose about her childhood spent with her physically abusive father. I counted her as one of my favorite blogging friends. But her blog became a steady stream of posts espousing various conspiracy theories. I couldn’t take it. I had to leave. Now it’s my turn.
Do you follow Q? Not follow like an adherent, not one of those people at a Trump rally holding up a QAnon placard above their bright, red MAGA hat. Are you following the news story? I just started last month. I never watch TV news. And my commute takes about five minutes, so I don’t really listen to the news on the radio either. The only news I read is what I click on from the Washington Post and CNN websites. Those QAnon links, I ignored them for months.
QAnon, summarized from Wikipedia: There is a worldwide cabal of Satan-worshiping pedophiles who rule the world and control everything. They control the politicians. They control the media. They control Hollywood. They would have continued ruling the world, were it not for the election of Donald Trump. He is the only hope. He keeps the cabal in check. The world would be ignorant of this behind-the-scenes battle were it not for “Q.” Q is the poster who broke the story on the now defunct right-wing web platform 4chan. Q now posts on 8chan, and continues to reveal details about this massive conspiracy, and the coming “Storm”—a mass arrest of the thousands of Democrats, world leaders and film-industry professionals that comprise this cabal.
Actually, I followed this story closely when it first broke. In 2016, alt-right internet chatter convinced Edgar Welch to burst into Comet Ping Pong, a pizzeria in Washington, DC with guns a-blazing, planning to rescue the children that Hillary Clinton and her cronies locked in the restaurant’s basement. Apparently, Comet Ping Pong was ground-zero for an international child sex-trafficking ring. It wasn’t the absurdity of the story that caught my eye, but the location of Comet Ping Pong. It’s a block away from my old house. Man, we didn’t have cool places like that to walk to when I lived there.
Conspiracy theories, here’s one I buy. Since September 12, 2001, I’ve believed that Flight 93 crashed into a field outside of Shanksville, Pennsylvania not because the passengers revolted against the hijackers, but because the United States military shot the plane down. The Bush administration quickly and correctly realized that America needed at least one win on that day. What could be a better story than heroic Americans taking their fate into their own hands?
Which brings me to my latest conspiracy theory: In this election, Putin and his droves of Russian bots aren’t trying to elect Trump, they’re working for Biden. Counter-intuitive, right? What could be better for Russia than another four years of Trump destroying democracy?
As soon as Biden wins—and I do think he’ll win—those same bots will be reprogrammed to fire up Trump’s second amendment base. “The Democrats STOLE the election!” they will say. Twitter and Facebook posts will claim that someone saw a guy in a Biden shirt stuffing a ballot box in Florida. We’ll read about Trump voters turned away from the polling places in Pennsylvania. “Take back the country!” will rise as the rallying cry simultaneously from all corners of the United States. The military will fracture and guerrilla armies will form. This is how Putin’s war starts.
You can call me Z. This is the ZAnon conspiracy theory. It needs to be shared far and wide before Tuesday’s election. It’s the only hope for democracy to survive. Remember, you read it here first.