The rapper, who says he is running for president, spread debunked theories about children being harmed by life-saving vaccines.
- Kanye West said in an interview with Forbes that he had the coronavirus in February.
- In the same interview, West also said he's running for president under the advisement of Tesla and SpaceX CEO Elon Musk on "The Birthday Party" ticket with Michelle Tidball, an obscure Wyoming preacher, as his running mate.
- West also claimed — without evidence — that "so many" children who have been vaccinated are being "paralyzed."
- "That's the mark of the beast," West said. "They want to put chips inside of us, they want to do all kinds of things, to make it where we can't cross the gates of heaven."
- Dr. Anthony Fauci, the longtime director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, has said a vaccine is imperative to getting the US back to a pre-coronavirus normal and has previously pointed toward a problematic growing "anti-science bias" in the US.
- Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.
Kanye West, who has announced his intention to run for president of the United States, told Forbes in an interview published Wednesday he had the coronavirus in February.
The rapper, 43, said he suffered "chills" and "shaking in the bed" when he had the disease caused by the novel coronavirus that has so far infected at least 2,996,333 Americans and killed at least 131,481, according to data analyzed by Johns Hopkins University. He treated the illness by "taking hot showers" and "looking at videos" that told him how to best treat the disease caused by the novel coronavirus, he told Forbes.
"I remember someone had told me Drake had the coronavirus and my response was Drake can't be sicker than me!" West said.
In the same interview, West offered conspiracy theories about a potential vaccine and offered no evidence to support them.
"It's so many of our children that are being vaccinated and paralyzed… So when they say the way we're going to fix COVID is with a vaccine, I'm extremely cautious," he said.
A growing movement in the US against vaccines has already caused diseases once thought to be eradicated — like the Measles — to return in some communities. Some so-called "anti-vaxxers" have already said they won't support a COVID-19 vaccine.
West suggested a demonic influence behind vaccinations, baselessly saying it was related to chip implants, and that it would stop people from getting into heaven.
"That's the mark of the beast," West told Forbes' Randall Lane. "They want to put chips inside of us, they want to do all kinds of things, to make it where we can't cross the gates of heaven. I'm sorry when I say they, the humans that have the Devil inside them. And the sad thing is that, the saddest thing is that we all won't make it to heaven, that there'll be some of us that do not make it."
A vaccine is essential for a return to normality
Experts, like Dr. Anthony Fauci, the longtime director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, have warned that a return to a pre-coronavirus lifestyle might not be possible before a vaccine is developed.
There more than two-dozen coronavirus vaccines expected to begin human testing before the end of the year with testing of 16 candidates already underway in clinical trials. There's no evidence that any of them will stop you from getting into heaven, would cause paralysis, or involves having a chip implanted in you. Some experts are hopeful that a vaccine will be "within our grasp" by December of this year, as Business Insider's Aylin Woodward reported.
West has long trafficked in conspiracy theories about diseases. In 2005, he said AIDs was a "man-made" disease engineered by the US government and "placed in Africa" to kill Black people.
In June, Fauci pointed toward a growing "anti-science bias" as "one of the problems we face in the United States," comparing people who refuse to heed scientists' warnings and advice about COVID-19 to the movement against vaccines.
"If you go by the evidence and by the data, you're speaking the truth and it's amazing sometimes, the denial there is," Fauci. "It's the same thing that gets people who are anti-vaxxers — who don't want people to get vaccinated, even though the data clearly indicate the safety of vaccines. That's really a problem."
When the "Wash Us in The Blood" rapper was asked about a cure for COVID-19, he answered by pointing toward religion.
"We pray," West, who also in the interview said he has never voted in his life, said. "We pray for the freedom. It's all about God. We need to stop doing things that make God mad."