Pizza and Politics Discusses Conspiracy Theories

Posted: November 15, 2019 | Author: Tiago Rodrigues da Costa | Read Time: 2 minutes

Students participating in Pizza and PoliticsOne thing is certain, this week’s Pizza and Politics on Conspiracy Theories was one of the lighter sessions of the semester. Hosted by student executive member Autumn Thatcher and student fellow Olivia Johnson in Southern Utah University’s Michael O. Leavitt Center for Politics and Public Service, the presentation explored multiple examples within the world of conspiracy theory. At times a humorous topic, it was expected that students would laugh quite a bit—and they did.

The discussion started with conspiracy theories that proved to be true. Most of these were older conspiracies, like the conspiracy theory of 1926, that claimed the government was poisoning alcohol by increasing the levels of methanol during prohibition time in order to discourage people from drinking. Many people didn’t stop drinking and evidence shows about 10,000 people died as a consequence of the government’s decision. 

When the question “Should the government be held accountable?” was asked, students divided in the answer. Some said, no, because it has been almost 100 years. Others said, yes, because the government should be always held accountable.

The discussion shifted to conspiracy theories that were proven to be false. These were some of the most bizarre examples of this session. From all, the story that triggered more laughs was the one that says Cardi B is a member of the Illuminati society. The Illuminati is a fictitious secret group that most people say it was created to undervalue the powers of the most powerful people in the world. The Illuminati was a Bavarian secret society in the 18th century, but many people still recognize the power of this group nowadays. 

The topic was brought back to SUU and students had the chance to talk about the story of Virginia Loomis and the haunting of Old Main. The story tells that Virginia Loomis was killed and left in a rock that would be used in Old Main - first building to be constructed at SUU. Because of that, it’s said that Virginia Loomis’s spirit is attached to the building forever.

When asked if students believe the ghost of Virginia Loomis is real or not, some students said they have been hearing strange noises in the older buildings on campus, others said they are skeptical in relation to the existence of ghosts on campus, but above all, everyone agreed the story of Virginia Loomis belongs to SUU's culture lived today, and it should be preserved.

The Michael O. Leavitt Center for Politics and Public Service hosts Pizza & Politics every Wednesday at noon to discuss current political and social topics. Students at the Leavitt Center research, present, and moderate the discussions. These discussions are aimed to expose the student community to a variety of important issues and encourage them to share their own perspectives while learning the other sides as well. Free pizza is provided for all attending P&P. 

Tags: Leavitt Center

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