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Remember when you were, like, eight years old and learned that the Earth was shaped like a ball? Remember when your teacher held up a globe at the front of the class, and you giggled at those ancient philosophers who once thought it was flat? Well, it’s 2016, and an ever growing number of people are still refusing to accept this fact. These people are called Flat Earthers and, seemingly, they exist in their droves.
Recent weeks have seen a significant amount of attention paid to the Flat Earth theory, with ‘celebrities’ like Tila Tequila (she had that bisexual MTV dating show) and rapper B.o.B (he released that song Airplanes with Paramore) taking to the internet to emphasise their utter disbelief. Apparently, they see no real evidence that the Earth is actually round. Sorry NASA, nice try.
Tila Tequila’s observations on Twitter are so completely nonsensical, one can only dance restlessly between utter confusion and modest sympathy as you shake your head, facepalm, and wonder how somebody could be so ill-informed.
B.o.B, however, seems a little more hardcore, apparently having put an awful lot more thought into his belief of the theory; using images, questionable references, and even his music to back up his beliefs.
The cities in the background are approx. 16miles apart… where is the curve ? please explain this pic.twitter.com/YCJVBdOWX7
— B.o.B (@bobatl) January 25, 2016
No matter how high in elevation you are… the horizon is always eye level … sorry cadets… I didn’t wanna believe it either.
— B.o.B (@bobatl) January 25, 2016
Like, does he literally think that when you are standing on a beach you can see the edge of the world? How small does he think the world is? Where the fuck does he think the rest of the countries fit?!
But B.o.B and Tila Tequila aren’t the only people on this (round) Earth engaging with these theories. There in fact exists a Flat Earth Society – a very real movement dedicated to sharing photographic ‘evidence,’ engaging in forum discussions, and posting articles all about the Flat Earth. The society have been active online since 2004. Their website declares that the group are…
(…) Relying on one’s own senses to discern the true nature of the world around us. The world looks flat, the bottoms of clouds are flat (… ) these are all examples of your senses telling you that we do not live on a spherical heliocentric world.
So basically, the world is flat, ‘because we think so.’
The theory seems to be yet another one of the countless Illuminati conspiracies perpetuated by the likes of Mark Dice and David Icke; the latter of whom is actually verified on Twitter, might I add. Although generally quite entertaining, these Illuminati theories can actually get quite dark – not to mention worrying considering the sheer amount of people who can now engage with them. A documentary on YouTube called True World – Flat Earth has been watched a staggering, and concerning, 272,770 times. We can only hope that most of those views came from people who don’t believe that the all-seeing eye of the Illuminati actually exists.
The Illuminati these ‘theorists’ talk about tends to refer to the Bavarian Illuminati, founded by German philosopher Adam Weishaupt in 1776. Their professed goals were “to teach people to be happy by encouraging them to be good – by illuminating the mind and freeing it from prejudice and superstition.” Although it is generally accepted that the group did not survive their suppression in Bavaria, several fraternal organisations today claim to have descended from the Bavarian Illuminati.
A documentary on YouTube called True World – Flat Earth has been watched a staggering, and concerning, 272,770 times. We can only hope that most of those views came from people who don’t believe that the all-seeing eye of the Illuminati actually exists.
David Icke and Mark Dice certainly campaign that there is still a secret Illuminati organisation, and a lot of people still believe this to be true. They are certain that these secret power circles reach the highest ranks of society – right up to the Obama administration and even Beyoncé – and that modern world events are being controlled by them. They engage in satanic rituals and sacrifices. Icke is also notorious for claiming that child abuse is woven into the fabric of these secret societies… I told you it got dark.
Another conspiracy theorist called Donald Marshall, who claims to be an ex-Illuminati insider, tells online of his supposed experiences with the group. He cites Vladimir Putin, Queen Elizabeth, and her husband as members, while also explaining something that he calls ‘Vril’ – “parasitic lizards that have a unique biological property of their bodies that allows them to stick a brain proboscis into another animal’s eye, preferably a human’s, and body-snatch them making them a human host.”
Marshall has also defended the existence of underground cloning centres, where the government have been apparently cloning humans since the 1940s (well before Dolly the Sheep in 1997). Marshall also claims he is a clone himself who has “no agenda but to share the truth with the world as I’m going to die from heart failure due to clone torture (…) This will be your only chance to save our race and world from Vril. You have been warned.”
Our constant omnipresent World Wide Web means that theories like these are accessible with the mere click of a button – available for more and more of us to debunk, laugh at, or simply ignore. But this also means that these theories are continuously believed by more and more people too.
Our constant omnipresent World Wide Web means that theories like these are accessible with the mere click of a button – available for more and more of us to debunk, laugh at, or simply ignore.
B.o.B and Tila Tequila are not the only celebrities to publicly support a conspiracy theory. The ubiquitous Kardashians have raised their hands in the conspiracy classroom too, with Kylie Jenner (randomly) tweeting a meme about chemtrails – a less extremist conspiracy claiming there are harmful agents purposely placed in the fuel of airplanes resulting in toxic trails that are detrimental to the human race – and Kanye West declaring “I know that the government administer AIDS, so I guess we just pray like the minister say,” in his song Heard ‘Em Say.
But Kanye’s Kanye. There’s no shock there.
And of course there’s the ever growing supply of conspiracies surrounding 9/11 – probably the most famous topic to induce an endless supply of alternative theories to what actually happened. Many celebrities have, however quietly, stated their thoughts on the subject including Marion Cotillard, Tom Delonge of Blink 182 and Muse’s Matt Bellamy, who has since retracted his statement about the attacks being an ‘inside job.’
So where does this leave us? Should we hail these people as the brave exposers of unimaginable truths? Should we revoke their internet access and call them a doctor? Or should we simply leave them to it, spouting online nonsense in a bid to overthrow the reptilian Obama, while engaging in racist, highly problematic, and often anti-Semitic discourse? Surely they’re not harming anybody… Are they?
It’s not hard to understand why there is so much suspicion of power in the world. We should be suspicious. Perhaps not of a reptilian Obama, but of the powerful in general, the sources of this power, and how it can be used to silence, control, and dictate how we see the world. Look at the huge (non-Illuminati related) cover ups we’re already aware of. Operation Yewtree. The Catholic Church’s institutional abuse. Phone hacking scandals. Edward Snowden’s whistle blowing. Wikileaks.
Who knows why Tila Tequila and B.o.B believe what they do. Should we continue to challenge them, or simply leave them to it? Whatever the answer – and however many more people jump aboard the conspiracy theory bandwagon – something tells me the Earth actually is round, after all.
(That ‘something’ being science.)