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Misleading
misleading

CLAIM ID

3c0e3e5e

Bill Gates smiled after suggesting that unvaccinated people should be stripped of their Social Security.

Gates smiled very often through the interview. He did not suggest that unvaccinated should be stripped of their Social Security.

On August 9, 2021, a link to an article from NewsPunch, a Los Angeles-based fake news website known for spreading conspiracy theories, was posted on Facebook.

The NewsPunch article features a video of Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates, which the site apparently lifted from a CNN Anderson Cooper 360° interview from August 4, 2021. The article is titled "Bill Gates Gleefully Smiles After Suggesting Unvaccinated Should Be Stripped of Social Security." The Facebook post linking to the NewsPunch article has amassed over 4k views in the last 24 hours.

Since the start of the pandemic, Gates has been at the center of misleading and false claims, as well as conspiracy theories. In the video, Gates didn't suggest that unvaccinated should be stripped of Social Security. Cooper, while talking about unvaccinated people, asked Gates, "Do you think the Federal government or state governments, or the very least the Federal government, should mandate; if you want to get on an airplane, you have to be vaccinated, or if you want Social Security, you need to be vaccinated?"

To this, Gates replied that there was a compelling case to be made for mandating vaccines in care homes, adding that he hoped that the U.S. would reach the stage where 80 or 90 percent of the population were vaccinated. He said that the Delta variant "changed the rules." However, at no point does Gates comment on social security.

Secondly, while Gates indeed smiled when Cooper talked about mandating vaccines, Gates smiled on multiple occasions during the interview, making this an irrelevant point. The video shared by NewsPunch is only 30 seconds long and has been taken out of context, making this claim misleading.

The COVID-19 pandemic has given rise to a lot of potentially dangerous misinformation. For reliable advice on COVID-19, including symptoms, prevention, and available treatment, please refer to the World Health Organization or your national healthcare authority.

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