Political narratives often have two parts – the facts, and implied conclusion.
One popular conspiracy narrative is that Bill Gates and other elites want to institute mandatory vaccines, which will create greater suffering for the world and greater control for them.
When most people try to debate these narratives, they look at the facts. “Well, actually, it won’t be mandatory, and vaccines are good for you, so…” However, the implications are equally debatable.
Suppose you were to accept this narrative about Gates as true. What are the implications? What should you do in response to that narrative?
Most people pushing this narrative assume that it means you should “resist” in some way by “sharing the information.” However, if you believe that there are a group of elites who run the media, medical system, government, etc. how will “sharing the information” stop them? What will that actually accomplish?
The “share the information” conclusion leads to exactly the same place as the mainstream narratives: stay home and post your political opinions on social media.
If the conclusion of this narrative is that it makes you feel so powerless that all you can do to resist is stay home and post on Facebook and Twitter… who does this narrative really serve?
Even the people crafting conspiracy narratives only offer consumption as a way to resist. “Buy my book and share it everywhere.” Why? How will this stop the government?
However, you can draw multiple conclusions from any given narrative. Why is “share the information” the only conclusion this narrative can lead to? What if instead, the conclusion you drew was that you need to join a political activist group, buy property outside the United States, train for future civil conflicts… etc. Wouldn’t these all be potential conclusions you could draw from that conspiracy narrative?
In fact – you could draw those conclusions from other more mainstream narratives. Suppose you believed that coronavirus was a deadly disease that could only be stopped through universal vaccination. Couldn’t you draw the conclusion from that mainstream narrative that existing medical authorities are too incompetent to get the job done (look how they handled coronavirus), and the only way to stay safe is to become the dictator of an island nation that restricts all travel? Wouldn’t accepting the mainstream narrative be more radical if it leads you to dedicate your energy to overthrowing island nations rather than posting on social media? Who would be more radical and more likely to create change?
I’ve found in talking with conspiracy theorists about this that they are so used to debating the facts they’ve never had anyone engage their ideas like a text, drawing multiple interpretations and conclusions. Even if everything conspiracy theorists said was true, there are multiple narratives you could draw from their ideas. Are you really as powerless as these narratives suggest?
P.S. I’ve got a book coming out soon that will explain how you can actually “resist.” Subscribe to my email list to get a free chapter when it comes out.