Whether or not singer Chris Brown genuinely regrets his October 13 tweet about Ebola being a form of population control is open to speculation. In reality, however, the idea will remain in the public consciousness even though, to most, it is little more than another crazy conspiracy theory. Brown’s Twitter comment drew a strong reaction and his response to that was, one could say, enigmatic.
Brown, who has 13.7 million followers on Twitter, recently decided to weigh in on the Ebola situation, tweeting “I don’t know … but I think this Ebola epidemic is a form of population control. Shit is getting crazy, bruh.”
Predictably, the hip-hop and R&B star took more than a little flak for his opinion, although not everyone thought he was insane for expressing the thought. Brown himself certainly did not retract the comment, nor did he apologize for it. After tweeting the idea, he followed up with “Let me shut my black ass up!” By some, this was taken to be an apology, of sorts, but perhaps Brown merely regretted opening himself up to a barrage of criticism, rather than actually deciding that his assumption was inaccurate. In response to withering replies to his tweet, he posted “I say what I want. If u don’t like it…SUCK MY A** (little Asian girl voice).”
Even assuming that his thoughts on Ebola are wildly off the mark, he was, indeed, merely exercising his right to free speech and was expressing an opinion that is not new. The idea that Ebola was synthetically produced to target a section of the world’s population is not something that Chris Brown came up with all by himself.
Ever since the HIV/AIDS epidemic took hold, certain individuals have speculated – even insisted – that the virus was man-made and designed to decimate the black population. Those prominent figures in the black community in the United States who make a living from race-baiting have brought up the theory from time to time. As another deadly virus, Ebola, claims thousands of lives in Africa, such an idea was bound to surface, once again.
The entire concept of population control has been around for some time. Although many would consider it nothing more than a wild conspiracy theory, peddled by those who believe that the Illuminati is controlling the world, the moon landing never took place and the 9/11 terrorist attack on the World Trade Center was an inside job, the concept has been touted by numerous political groups for many years. Progressives and hard-core environmentalists do, indeed, believe that population control is necessary, in order to both engineer a ‘perfect’ society and to save the natural world from the abuses of mankind. Experiments to control population growth are more than fiction; Planned Parenthood was created for just such a purpose and founder Margaret Sanger, an American Progressive, often wrote and spoke about the need to reduce the black population in the United States. Blacks were not her only target; she also considered the poor to be parasites who should be prevented from breeding. The idea lives on today among Democrats like Hillary Rodham Clinton, who has often expressed her admiration for Sanger.
The very idea of population control seems, to most people, insane and wildly paranoid. It is a concept that will never go away, however; it is the perfect combination of terrifying conspiracy theory and actual political philosophy. Ethnic and religious minorities, above all others, could hardly be blamed for believing that they would be the first targets of a worldwide effort to reduce the number of human beings on the planet. When Chris Brown suggested that Ebola is the latest attempt at population control, he may be completely wrong and almost certainly is. Who is to say, however, that he is wrong to voice his opinion – no matter how unconventional?
Opinion by Graham J Noble