But more worryingly, many believe it. The Pew Research Center in the US recently surveyed 8,914 people about their beliefs regarding the virus. Although scientists are practically unanimous that the virus came about naturally, nearly three in 10 of the people surveyed by the Pew Center said they thought the virus was created in a laboratory. About a quarter of the interviewees thought it was created intentionally while 6% thought it was probably created by accident. Another 25% of respondents said they weren’t sure where the virus came from.
Why do people believe something that is so clearly wrong? Education seems to be one explanation. People with a university education were less likely to believe the virus was created in a lab than those without a university education, for example. But age, ethnicity and even political affiliation are also factors affecting peoples' beliefs. More younger people than old were wrong about the origin of the virus. About thirty percent of people aged 18 to 29 said the virus came from a lab, while just less than 21% of adults 65 and older said the same thing. The belief was also more common among blacks and Hispanics than whites. Four in ten Hispanics and a third of blacks said they believed this, while only 26% of whites said they did. Meanwhile, Republicans were more likely than Democrats to think the coronavirus came from a lab (37% vs 21%). The more conservative, the more likely people were to be wrong about the origins of the virus.
Source: Pew Research Center