In an interview on the Daily Beast "The New Abnormal" podcast, journalist and author Will Sommer explained the conspiracy movement QAnon has embedded itself so deeply into American culture that it is hard to see it going away.
Promoting his new book, "Trust the Plan: The Rise of QAnon and the Conspiracy That Unhinged America," Sommer sat down with the hosts and explained the QAnon movement, ultimately likening it to "a mind virus."
According to the author, conspiracy movements usually wither away as something new comes along, but QAnon, like Donald Trump, is not going away quietly. He then added it continues on despite rumors failing to come true.
"These things inevitably fail to happen, I mean, when Q kind of makes a big splash saying ‘Hillary Clinton’s gonna be arrested in two weeks,’ and people go, ‘wow, okay, great’ and then it doesn’t happen, you have to ask why are we still dealing with QAnon six years later? Well, the reason is because people have all of these ways to square the cognitive dissonance in their heads,” he explained.
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He added the beliefs promoted by Q take over people's lives as they fall prey to outrageous claims that should pull them up short.
“It is almost like a mind virus where once it gets into your life, for many QAnon believers, it becomes really all-consuming. And if you think about it from their perspective, they’re hearing that everything in the world they’ve learned is a lie, and that the most powerful people in the world are drinking children’s blood and worshiping the devil," he elaborated. "And so suddenly, you know, I think you can understand why that becomes the most important thing for them.”
That, in turn, brought him to Donald Trump who has been central to the growth of the movement to the point that he has been elevated to god-like status.
“There was one poll that I think the Times summed up well is that, QAnon in the United States is more popular than a lot of major religions. From the perspective of QAnon believers, Donald Trump is the God figure. I mean, they jokingly call him the God emperor, maybe semi jokingly. He’s their savior figure. So for them, ever since QAnon started, what they wanted was an acknowledgement from Donald Trump," he stated before adding, "And today we have Donald Trump posting QAnon memes himself."
You can listen to his interview here.