Are you, or have you ever been, a member of a 18th century European group hell bent on taking over the world by rejecting religion and fomenting revolution. If so, could you get me Katy Perry’s autograph? It’s for my niece.
Pop star Perry is, apparently, in the Illuminati. At least according to some of the 30,000 plus people who have signed a petition calling for her new video, Dark Horse, to be removed from YouTube.
The video, featuring Perry as a Cleopatra type queen in ancient Memphis (Egypt, not Tenessee, though apparently it’s a play on the southern hometown of her collaborator on the track, rapper Juicy J).
Anyway, ancient Egyptian imagery such as pyramids loom large in conspiracy theories about the Illuminati. But they are not the reason people are calling for Perry’s video to be banned. No, the reason is that apparently, during the video, a pendant with the word “Allah” on it is burned, or turned to dust. It’s not entirely clear. Perry hits the chap wearing the pendant with some sort of lighting bolt and then he just kind of melts.
A Shazad Iqbal from Bradford has said that this is bad and he wants it taken off the web. Iqbal’s petition reads:
This is the reason for lodging the petition so that people from different walks of life, different religions and from different parts of the world, agree that the video promotes blasphemy, using the name of God in an irrelevant and distasteful manner would be considered inappropriate by any religion
We hope that the video itself depicting such images is removed. Such acts are not condoned nor tolerated, we hope YouTube will remove the video.”
A few of the signatories appear to link Perry’s alleged Illuminati membership with the apparent Allah-name burning. This might just about make sense if one was to examine the original purpose of the real Bavarian Illuminati, which was quite anti-religious. Equally, it might make sense if the Illuminati really existed and Katy Perry was a leading member of it. But well, if “ifs” and “ands” were pots and pans…
But while most signatories do not seem to buy into the Illuminati theory, there is still a sense that Allah’s name was deliberately inserted into the video and then desecrated. Rather than the rather more obvious explanation that an LA costume designer went out looking for vaguely “Egyptian” looking jewellery and picked this pendant up without giving the first thought to what the letters might actually spell.
The petition is a good example of the “conspiracy versus cock up” clash. When something happens you don’t like, it’s easier to think it was a deliberate attempt to upset you: the grim alternative is that the person who has offended, say, a belief held deeply, neither knows nor cares about you or your belief. In the grand scheme of things, you are utterly irrelevant. Better to imagine that Katy Perry, the Illuminati, the woman behind the counter in Costa who always seems annoyed with you, Nick Clegg, Elmo, and Herman Van Rompuy are all plotting against you. It puts you back in the centre of the universe, which is where all of us really want to be.