QAnon followers have been struggling for direction since Donald Trump lost the 2020 presidential election to President Joe Biden. A recent phone call interview Trump had with Fox News about the COVID-19 vaccine has believers grasping at straws.
Trump, who QAnon supporters see as a “savior” in their conspiracy theories did a phone interview on Tuesday with Fox News. During the interview, he stated that both he and Melania had been vaccinated and he urged others to do the same.
“I would recommend it and I would recommend it to a lot of people that don’t want to get it, and a lot of those people voted for me,” Trump said.
“But again, we have our freedoms and we have to live by them and I agree with that also. But it is a great vaccine. It is a safe vaccine and it is something that works.”
QAnon has always been an extreme anti-vax movement.
Leaders among the QAnon movement have long pushed misinformation about the vaccine for the novel coronavirus. The group has gone as far as to suggest that getting the vaccine will alter your DNA and turn people homosexual or transgender.
After Trump lost reelection QAnon began to push the anti-vax cause further.
The lack of mass executions after President Biden moved into the White House and Trump not returning to power on March 4 caused the group to push more misinformation about the vaccine. A vaccine Trump wants full credit for.
With Trump publicly contradicting QAnon’s theories that the vaccine is dangerous and that the coronavirus is a hoax many followers are struggling to find ways to cope and they appear to have latched on to the idea that it was someone impersonating Trump that spoke with Fox News to push the vaccine.
“Hi guys, I listened to it again… how he greeted Maria Bartiromo and how he spoke to her! That wasn’t him,” Mary Cue wrote in a QAnon channel on the messaging service Telegram.
“I saw and heard a lot of interviews between him and Maria that wasn’t like he speaks to her normally and it wasn’t his voice at all…Me and some other people noticed this immediately.”
Melissa Weeks added on Telegram: “How do I even know that was really President Trump speaking? They can fake anything.”
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“I just listen to it again and I have to agree it doesn’t really sound like him,” wrote Katherine Proudfoot. “Whoever it was was very good at imitating him though.”
This message is… not popular. “How many will die because they believe every word out of Trump’s mouth?” says one anti-vax QAnoner, unironically. “Trump would not tell us to do this”, says another.
QAnon advocate Ghost Ezra, who has over 250,000 followers on Telegram suggested: “My first take on the interview is that it didn’t sound like Trump. For conversation’s sake, let’s assume it was,” Ghost Ezra then added that people should make up their own minds if they want to get the vaccine or not.
In a later post, Ghost Ezra shared a long-held belief that the vaccine is somehow related to Trump ordering a military operation to carry out “the storm” prophecy, in which QAnon believers think Trump will carry out mass arrests and executions of high profile child abusers.
“Vaccines = arrests. Learn the language, it could be a matter of life and death. Just say no to the jab,” Ezra wrote.
“Operation Warp Speed = administering vaccine (arrests) to Pedo Vampires,” another Telegram user wrote.
Other users chose to believe that Trump was giving out coded messages to be interpreted by QAnon supporters and did not actually mean people should get the vaccine when he said people should get the vaccine.
“Come on people he’s talking about taking down all the bad people, saving the world,” wrote Kim Stephens. “Read between the lines. Anybody in their right mind would not take the vaccine.”
“He was NOT talking about the ‘COVID’ vaccine. He was definitely talking about the operation listen carefully to the interview again,” Josh Walls added.
“Something is way off in that he’s promoting it in contradiction to his previous statements, it means either he’s compromised and blackmailed (maybe one of his family held hostage) or he was never what he seemed to be,” wrote George Young.
User Lisa C then added: “Still don’t understand why he would speak in code where only anons would know what he’s talking about and the others who hear him say take the vaccine assume [logically] that he meant to take the actual vaccine. Particularly since taking it is potentially deadly or life-altering.”
Rob Rock wrote: “Why doesn’t Trump and the military just simply announce what is going on?!?! What is the point with keeping all the so-called secrets?
“Why push a vaccine if the pandemic is a ‘hoax’?!? This narrative doesn’t make sense. We’re getting punked,” another user wrote.