Years-old conspiracy theories confuse people, even in 2022

By: KENDRA BURDICK, CRAIG MORRISON, DESTINY RAMOS

Conspiracy theories have been around for centuries and some are created every day. These theories show some beliefs that have converted into explanations for things such as an organization being responsible for a circumstance or event.

No man on the moon

The conspiracy theory of man never having walked on the moon is a theory that has been around since Apollo 11 landed on the moon in 1969. (KENDRA BURDICK/Ethic News Photo)

The moon landing conspiracy theory is a widespread belief that the American Apollo 11 astronauts did not land on the Moon on July 20, 1969, and that NASA employees filmed all Apollo missions in a studio instead. Theorists from all over the world, such as Richard Godwin, author of the novel The Spirits and the article “One giant … lie? Why so many people still think the moon landings were faked,” claim that NASA staged some or all of these events with help from other organizations to fool the public into believing that a man had walked on the moon.

Godwin claims “Kaysing had contributed to the US space programme, albeit tenuous: between 1956 and 1963, he was an employee of Rocketdyne, a company that helped to design the Saturn V rocket engines. In 1976, he self-published a pamphlet called We Never Went to the Moon: America’s Thirty Billion Dollar Swindle, which sought evidence for his conviction utilizing grainy photocopies and ludicrous theories.”

The main evidence for this belief is based on photographs from NASA’s lunar surface exploration missions which show shadows in different directions and light coming from multiple directions, suggesting two sources of light (one natural, one artificial). It also suggests they were taken inside a large studio with a small window providing Earth.

Flat Earth

The Flat Earth theory has gained a lot of traction in recent years. (KENDRA BURDICK/Ethic News Photo)

A lot of people think that the earth is flat and not round as people have always been told. The conspiracy theory is often associated with religious beliefs, such as Christianity and Islam.

The Flat Earth theory was by the ancient Greeks who began the acceptance of the idea of the Earth being ‘flat.’ It had a resurgence during the Middle Ages when Christians were convinced that the earth was flat because they believed that if it wasn’t then there was no way one could reach Heaven.

Stephanie Pappas, writer for the science news site ‘Live Science,’ wrote the article “Are flat-earthers being serious,” explaining that believers of this theory can’t see to the other side because it’s blocked by ice, or that Antarctica is a giant ice wall. Others argue that NASA never went to space and all of its footage is faked. And finally, some say that we’re just living in a simulation and this planet is just one of many in our universe.

Pappas explains further “A fringe society founded in the 1950s, dedicated to insisting that the Earth is flat, has given rise to a modern ground of flat Earth adherents. These believers claim that the Earth is a flat disc and that evidence that it is round — say, pictures taken from space — is an elaborate hoax involving multiple governments. Opinions differ on exactly how the flat Earthworks, with believers concocting elaborate versions of physics and creative interpretations of the solar system to make their theories work.”

The conspiracy that the Earth is flat has been around for centuries, it has never disappeared and it seems that it’s a conspiracy theory that’ll stay for a while.

Chemtrails

When people see aircraft flying in the sky, creating a trail of clouds, are they seeing clouds or chemicals? According to ‘Harvard University,’ “Chemtrails refers to the theory that governments or other parties are engaged in a secret program to add toxic chemicals to the atmosphere from aircraft in a way that forms visible plumes in the sky, somewhat similar to contrails.” (KENDRA BURDICK/Ethic News Photo)

Contrails are what are produced by aircraft due to engine exhaust or changes in air pressure. It is composed mostly of water. However, some people believe that this is not the case. 

The Chemtrails conspiracy is a theory that around the mid-1990s. This theory states that the government or, some secret agency, is using aircraft to spray chemicals on the general population.

According to David Keith’s Research Group at Harvard University, some thought motives for the supposed chemtrails are “sterilization, reduction of life expectancy, mind control or weather control”. Some say they poison crops to change stock prices in the economy.

People who believe in this theory state that they can tell the difference between normal contrails and chemtrails. They think that chemtrails linger in the sky longer than contrails. This of course is false.
In a 2016 poll, it was discovered that 30-40% of the United States population believed in the theory. In another 2016 study done by the Washington Post, 76 out of 77 atmospheric scientists found no evidence to support the chemtrail conspiracy.

Area 51

Area 51 is a US Air Force military installation but is known to the media as the location where the US government experiments with and hides supernatural beings. Social media has engrossed Area 51 for years because of the way “It is not accessible to the public and under 24-hour surveillance [and that] those who work fly in and out of a restricted terminal at McCarran International Airport on one of several unmarked planes permitted to fly through the airspace above” according to Britannica.

In 1989, Robert Lazar, an American conspiracy theorist and self-proclaimed physicist, told Las Vegas television reporter George Knapp that he had worked on “extraterrestrial technology inside Area 51” and saw autopsy photographs and reports of aliens within the facility, and also claimed that the government used it not as a military base, but as a place “to examine recovered alien spacecraft.”

Illuminati

The Illuminati conspiracy theory, which began in the 15th century, is a supposed secret organization that is seeking to create a world totalitarian government, assumed by or adopted by various groups of persons who claimed to be unusually enlightened. This government, which would consist of Illuminati members, would have reign over the entire world.

A study done in 2016 showed that 23% of Americans believe in the Illuminati. Theories about who runs the Illuminati vary. 
The Illuminati adopted antique codenames to avoid identification. Weishaupt was ‘Brother Spartacus’, named after the gladiator who headed the insurrection of slaves and kept Rome in terror for three years. Weishaupt aimed to find young zealots – using Freemason lodges as a recruiting ground – and knit them together with secrecy. Initially, anyone over thirty wasn’t trusted.”

Bigfoot

The mythological creature, Bigfoot, has been a story told in many ways and cultures. According to Canadians, their term for Bigfoot is Sasquatch, and in Russia, they call it Yeti. Bigfoot is considered to be an “undiscovered hairy humanoid,” according to Natalie Wolchover, a writer for ‘Live Science.’

Mark Mancini, writer and fact checker for the magazine ‘The Week,’ shares “Texas veterinarian Melba S. Ketchum claimed last November to have proved via a Sasquatch DNA sample that the legendary apes are partially human. She even went so far as to insist that the government recognize them as “‘an indigenous people and immediately protect their human and Constitutional rights.’”

Old conspiracy theories that have been around for a while and new ones are all still carried around in people’s minds, all take part in how people as animals with brains and thought show as an outlet for people’s questions and theories that get created in the hemisphere.

Categories A&E

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