Bill Gates on Tuesday laughed off a conspiracy theory that suggests the Microsoft co-founder hatched an “evil plot” with Dr. Anthony Fauci to produce faulty vaccines and track Americans.
During an appearance on Trevor Noah’s podcast “What Now?” Gates suggested that the “wild” combination of the COVID-19 pandemic and social media had created “insane” and “stunning” discourse, some of which alleged the tech billionaire was engaged in a global scheme to harm the human population.
Noah asked Gates whether these negative opinions had changed his “appetite” or ability to engage in philanthropic efforts successfully.
Gates responded by telling a story about a woman who came up to him on the streets of Seattle and began accusing him of implanting a tracker inside her body.
“I looked at her, and I said, gosh, I really don’t need to track you; I’m sorry. Let me take the chip out of you,” Gates said as he and Noah erupted in laughter.
He then addressed conspiracy theories that Gates worked with Fauci on vaccines to depopulate the earth, keep tabs on citizens and alter their DNA. He also appeared to reference “The Real Anthony Fauci” by presidential candidate Robert F. Kennedy Jr.
“The fact that a book that talks about Fauci and I having an evil plot, killing millions of children with vaccines—the fact that could sell so well, you know, was just another surprise to me about human nature and how having an oversimplistic explanation about what was going on or the motivations, that was kind of shocking,” Gates said.
He added that while he was not necessarily concerned about the attitude towards him personally, the attitude towards vaccines has been “damning.”
“Getting kids to take things like the measles vaccine is super important in many countries. You know, that’s the difference between life and death. So, the skepticism about vaccines or medicine is very high and that’s making our health work a lot harder,” Gates said.
Last May, Gates made similar comments in an interview with the BBC.
“You almost have to laugh because it’s so crazy,” Gates said of conspiracies levied against him.
Gates has repeatedly denied conspiracies related to vaccination in media interviews, but a May 2020 YouGov/Yahoo poll found that almost one in three U.S. adults believe the microchipping theory.
A year later, another YouGov poll found that one in five Americans believed the U.S. government was pushing COVID-19 vaccines to microchip people.
“I mean, do I really want to track people?” Gates said in the BBC interview. “I spend billions on vaccines; I don’t make money on vaccines. Vaccines save lives, they don’t cause death, so you have to say it’s a bit of a strange world where channels for that [theory] gain a lot of interest.”