Singer, Anti‑Vaxxer M.I.A. Says She’d Choose Death Over Coronavirus Vaccine


Mar 27, 2020


Image Credit: Getty Images

Joining the ranks of anti-vaccine activists such as Jessica Biel, Jim Carrey, and Jenny McCarthy, fondly known as anti-vaxxers, is rapper M.I.A., who claims she’d rather die than opt for a coronavirus vaccine in the future. In a now-deleted, completely unprompted and unwarranted Twitter thread, M.I.A. lamented having to vaccinate her kid in the U.S. and assured everyone not to panic; she also professed that vaccination is a whole big scam thought up by the fields of science, business, banking and tech in cahoots together.

As far as conspiracy theories go, this one’s our least favorite, and the most dangerous.

Immunization — considered a boon by most, and responsible for the eradication of a plethora of deadly diseases to date — just doesn’t seem to cut it for anti-vaxxers, who tout “choice” as a valid excuse not to vaccinate their children and in M.I.A.’s case, themselves. They cite adverse exceptions to lay siege on what they perceive as side effects of vaccines — one of the most common misconceptions is that vaccines cause autism, a claim thoroughly debunked by various studies. Another concern regarding vaccination is its connection to the development of life-threatening conditions in babies, which, according to the College of Physicians of Philadelphia, can be attributed to chance alone, not vaccines. Needless to say, vaccines are safe, essential and life-saving tools in the arsenal of the modern healthcare professional, and without them, people die.

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Why People Are Suckers For a Good Conspiracy Theory

Due to rampant misinformation and widespread distrust of medical professionals, the anti-vaxx movement has taken root in India, and it seems Mathangi “Maya” Arulpragasam MBE (M.I.A.) is its latest recruit. She assures people, “You won’t die…” of Covid19, despite innumerable news reports proving the opposite. She says other vaccines will protect people from Covid19 — which is somehow against her position? — despite scientists stressing this isn’t true, and toiling to find one for the novel coronavirus.

The coronavirus pandemic is already a hotbed of misinformation, with people claiming they can kill the virus with home remedies, yoga and homeopathy. M.I.A. might choose to ride this train, but to be clear, nothing except a coronavirus vaccine will eradicate the virus. And the hurdles to develop the vaccine, get it approved, and distribute it to the masses are vast, especially when considered against the racing Covid19 pandemic. Anti-vaxx propaganda cannot be one of those hurdles. And trust us when we say: M.I.A.’s catchphrase “YALA” (You Always Live Again) is very, very far from the truth.


Written By Rajvi Desai

Rajvi Desai is The Swaddle’s Culture Editor. After graduating from NYU as a Journalism and Politics major, she covered breaking news and politics in New York City, and dabbled in design and entertainment journalism. Back in the homeland, she’s interested in tackling beauty, sports, politics and human rights in her gender-focused writing, while also co-managing The Swaddle Team’s podcast, Respectfully Disagree.


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