Lewis Hamilton backtracks on anti-vaxxer post but shares concerns over vaccine
Formula 1 star Lewis Hamilton insists he is not an anti-vaxxer and was unaware of the connotations of a post he shared on Instagram which suggested Bill Gates was ‘lying’ over coronavirus trials.
Earlier today, the 35-year-old shared a post to his 18.3million followers from content creator King Bach who had uploaded a video of Gates being interviewed on CBSN about progress on a vaccine for Covid-19, accompanying it with the caption: ‘I remember when I told my first lie’.
The Microsoft magnate has become the centre of unfounded conspiracy theories regarding the virus, with baseless suggestions that he is trying to put tracking devices into vaccines and was even responsible for the virus.
Hamilton was slammed for lending weight to those notions, though he now claims he was unaware of the caption – and the conspiracy theories that surround Gates – and was simply flagging how much work is still required to make vaccines safe.
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Posting to his Instagram stories on Monday, he wrote: ‘Hi guys. I’ve noticed some comments on my earlier post around the coronavirus vaccine, and want to clarify my thoughts on it, as I understand why they might have been misinterpreted.
‘Firstly, I hadn’t actually seen the comment attached so that is totally my fault and I have a lot of respect for the charity work Bill Gates does.
‘I also want to be clear that I’m not against a vaccine and no doubt it will be important in the fight against coronavirus, and I’m hopeful for its development to help save lives.
‘However, after watching the video, I felt it showed that there is still a lot of uncertainty about the side effects most importantly and how it is going to be funded.
‘I may not always get my posting right, I’m only human but I’m learning as we go. Sending you positivity.’
Gates had rubbished the conspiracy theories in his interview with CBSN, saying: ‘No, there’s no connection between any of these vaccines and any tracking type thing at all, I don’t know where that came from.’
On the reported side effects of one specific vaccine being developed, Moderna, Gates added: ‘Well the FDA [Food and Drug Administration], not being pressured, will look hard at that. The FDA is the gold standard of regulators and their current guidance on this, if they stick with that, is very appropriate.
‘The side effects were not super severe, that is, they did not cause permanent health problems for… the things there. Moderna did have to go with a fairly high dose to get the antibodies. Some of the other vaccines are able to go with lower doses to get responses which are pretty high. So there’s a lot of characteristics to these vaccines, it’s great that we have multiple.’
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