David Icke: Love and Lizard People
David Icke has been an icon of conspiratorial movements since he first declared himself the son of God in the early 1990s. His laying out of the foundations of the idea of a New World Order is what has maintained his popularity. Central to this belief is the concept of reptilian-human hybrids (otherwise known as “lizard people”) descended from a cross-breeding with interdimensional reptilian beings (known as Archons) that control Earth and its political machinations through manipulation (Icke). The Archons wish to manipulate humans because, by keeping them in a constant state of fear and hate, the Archons are able to feed off of negative energy that is given off. In fact, Icke believes that the entire universe is made up of vibrational energy and the manipulation of humans is what keeps them from realizing this (Icke). All of the components of this complicated system are contained in Icke’s books and lectures, with much of his direct linking between lizard people and important political figures in The Biggest Secret (1999). His beliefs are constantly evolving in popularity, and he is able to tour theaters across the world to lecture on his beliefs.
As Icke presents, the most significant evidence for his theory of lizard people and the Archons is his linking of the “reptilian bloodline” to a large number of U.S. presidents, celebrities, and other global figures (Barkun). He also cites political events such as the destabilization of the Middle East by Western powers as an intentional move to create fear and violence and social media as an experiment in surveillance and supplement to artificial intelligence (Oksman). This is where many of Icke’s beliefs start to make sense in some capacity – there is objective accuracy to the initial aspects of many of his claims. Western governments have indeed destabilized Middle Eastern ones through the supply of arms and monetary support, and it is common knowledge that governments around the world use social media activity and pinging as part of their surveillance activities. He has also been “correct” about some very broad predictions about sociopolitical events, yet so were many pundits who made claims about military or political actions without an attached reptilian belief system. There is significantly less credible, fact-based evidence for his ensuing connections to the Archons and the reptilian bloodline. There are false links in the family trees that he has drawn, along with very clear inconsistencies in his more specific predictions (such as the world ending in earthquakes and flooding in the early 1990s).
Although Icke’s followers have sub-beliefs as broad as his own (for example, there are Facebook groups that seek to “reconcile” Icke’s reptilian ideas with the flat-earth movement), all of the beliefs, Icke’s included, seem to stem from a misinterpretation of evidence. They begin with widely-accepted events and their outcomes, but then justify those events post-hoc with the complexities of Icke’s reptilian beliefs. Because there is an initial element of truth, it could be that Icke and his followers are both informed and misinformed at the same time – a combination that contributes to their insistence on their belief systems.
Icke’s followers come from all sorts of social classes and, because he is the only prophet and arbiter of his beliefs, it is hard to pin down exactly who most often agrees with him. However, there is a not-insignificant overlap of Icke supporters and anti-Semites. This stems from Icke’s mentioning of a handful of famous, Jewish families as key members of the reptilian-human hybrids. As such, it does not seem uncommon to see members of the David Icke Facebook groups post anti-Semitic conspiracy theories and tropes. It should be noted that Icke himself insists he is not anti-Semitic (because of his belief that hate feeds the Archons) and that ultimate love is the only way to overcome the reptilian beings (VICE). As alluded to earlier, Icke’s beliefs are often used to complement other extraordinary beliefs, so perhaps people who believe in other, less broad beliefs run into Icke through their initial beliefs in things like the faking of the moon landing. Having online communities helps people sustain these beliefs, along with the fact that Icke maintains his own website with near-daily articles and updates. He is often the subject of documentaries, news specials, and regularly goes on tour to spread his beliefs, as well. All of this activity helps keep his supporters engaged in the beliefs.
In all, I think that the biggest contribution to Icke’s reptilian overlord belief system is his system’s intricacy and his own personal charisma. By adding on additional explanations as conflicting information arises (in a post-hoc fashion), Icke is able to “adapt” to challenges. He and his supporters can then scour the globe to find happenings that “prove” them correct (much like the justification of predictions from Nostradamus). The latter is a strong example of confirmation bias. Not only that, but the fact that so many of Icke’s ideas are founded on an initial understanding of global events may contribute to the resilience of he and his practitioners’ beliefs: they believe that, because they have that initial information threshold, they are “too smart to be fooled”. This goes hand-in-hand with the often seemingly-rational methods of explanation that Icke employs in his live talks. That is, there is an appearance of scientific reasoning and logic even though virtually no aspects of the scientific method have been employed. Perhaps most of all, Icke and his extraordinary beliefs are more easily accepted because the ultimate takeaway is largely positive: be kind to one another (Ward). His message that universal love of mankind is the only solution can certainly be appealing to many, and the lack of a violent call to action may be a boon to his cause.
“Culture of Conspiracy Apocalyptic Visions in Contemporary America.” Culture of Conspiracy Apocalyptic Visions in Contemporary America, by Michael Barkun, University of California Press, 2014, pp. 101–110.
Icke, David. The Biggest Secret. Bridge of Love Publications USA, 2001.
Oksman, Olga. “Conspiracy Craze: Why 12 Million Americans Believe Alien Lizards Rule Us.” The Guardian, Guardian News and Media, 7 Apr. 2016, www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2016/apr/07/conspiracy-theory-paranoia-aliens-illuminati-beyonce-vaccines-cliven-bundy-jfk.
VICE, director. Magic Bullet: David Icke and the Lizard Apocalypse. Magic Bullet: David Icke and the Lizard Apocalypse, VICE, 2012, video.vice.com/en_us/video/magic-bullet-david-icke-and-the-lizard-apocalypse-vice-specials/57640f3191a3e54d645b90b1.
Ward, James. “Mocked Prophet: What Is David Icke’s Appeal?” New Humanist, 10 Dec. 2014.