Brow Beat

John Oliver Fights Coronavirus Myths and Misinformation, From 5G to Miracle Cures

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John Oliver continues to broadcast about the coronavirus from his bare-bones gray void during the pandemic, covering everything from why Trump’s response to the crisis has been so ineffective to how both essential and unemployed workers are suffering. On Sunday, Oliver returned to Last Week Tonight to discuss yet another troubling facet of our current situation: the abundance of misinformation circulating about the virus. He showed how right-wing personalities like Rush Limbaugh have spent years undermining credible institutions, allowing people to now believe that 5G mobile networks spread the disease or that certain drugs are miracle cures even though the science doesn’t yet back them up.

As Oliver debunked several of these rumors, he had harsh words for the people who spread them, including the president. “I know people who’ve died from [the coronavirus]. I also know people who are taking hydroxychloroquine because they think it will give them immunity, and I know people with lupus who are down to their last few weeks of pills, and it makes me fucking furious,” he said. “Because the fact is, the fastest way for this to be over is for all of us to remain united. But the only way that happens is if we have trusted, well-informed leadership, which unfortunately, we don’t.”

For more on the impact of COVID-19, listen to Monday’s What Next.