A survivor of the 2018 Parkland, Florida school shooting told Vice News his father fell deep into the QAnon rabbit hole and now believes the massacre that killed 17 people at his school was fake .
The 18-year-old was among the latest batch of survivors of the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School mass shooting. He spoke anonymously to Vice News, under the pseudonym Bill, after sharing his story on a Reddit thread dedicated to supporting friends and family of QAnon subscribers. He said he wanted to protect his identity for fear of attacks from conspiracy theorists.
Bill said his father believed the shooting that killed nine of his classmates was a hoax and that the gunman, Bill and his classmates were “paid pawns in a grand conspiracy orchestrated by a dark force,” said reported Vice.
Bill’s father was caught up in conspiracy theories a few months after the start of the coronavirus pandemic, as anti-lockdown protests were taking place, he said.
“His feelings were so strong that they turned into facts for him. So if he didn’t like having to wear masks, it doesn’t matter what the doctors or scientists say, ”he told Vice. “Anything that contradicted his feelings was wrong. So he turned to the internet to find like-minded people, which led him to QAnon.
Those beliefs took a turn in January, when Bill’s father saw footage of Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.) Harassing Parkland shooting survivor and gun safety activist David Hogg in 2018.
Greene has shown support for conspiracy theories that Parkland and other school shootings were “false flag” operations to push for tougher gun laws. She is also a follower of QAnon, the absurd conspiracy theory movement that radicalized Americans and torn families apart, especially during the pandemic.
Since seeing Greene’s video, Bill’s dad has reportedly been convinced the school shooting was a hoax.
Bill plans to leave home now that he’s 18. Although he found support from other members of the QAnon Casualties Reddit community, he said, he couldn’t bring himself to speak with his fellow survivors about what he went through at home. .
He believes his relationship with his father can never be mended. “I don’t know how to help someone who has come this far,” he told Vice.
Read the full article on Vice News.
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