Conspiracy Theorists Are Burning Snow to Prove It’s Fake

Unprecedented winter storms in southern states have made those most affected by the weather pretty tense over the last week. But we can’t say we saw this one coming: New viral videos show TikTok users holding lighters to snowballs to stoke conspiracy theories about “fake snow” they say has been seeded by—wait for it—global environmental philanthropist and Microsoft cofounder Bill Gates.

Yeah. It’s a lot.

In the videos, people hold open flames from lighters and other implements directly up to hardpacked snowballs. The snowballs don’t appear to melt, but instead, they burn. No water, no dripping, no nothing,” says one woman, who believes there’s metal inside the snow, and that Gates is somehow to blame.

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