Wildly popular Portland, Oregon, pastry shop Voodoo Doughnut is being targeted by right wing conspiracy theorists who are convinced that the shop is somehow connected to a child sex trafficking ring.
This preposterous conceit stems from a fellow named Michael Whelan — AKA Vegan Mikey — who appeared on the YouTube channel Lift the Veil last weekend claiming that he attended a party at the house of Voodoo owner Tres Shannon where he says “there was abuse of children going on.” Whelan alleges that when he expressed his “dissatisfaction” at the situation, he then became a target of the people at the party.
“That’s when the death threats started,” he says in the YouTube clip. “That’s when everything went ballistic in my life.” Whelan also asserts that the some of the people at the Voodoo owner’s party “had worked at Comet,” a reference to the Washington D.C. pizzeria that became the target of a similar conspiracy theory right around the 2016 election. During the height of #PizzaGate mania, one of the followers of this theory showed up to the restaurant and opened fire in the dining room.
The outrageous story about the doughnut shop owner and his friends got a signal boost from frequent InfoWars guest and QAnon enthusiast Isaac Kappy earlier this week. Soon, more conspiracy theorists started looking for clues and sharing their findings on social media, using the #DoughnutGate hashtag:
#Hivites #pizzagate #doughnutgate #survivorstories #pedogate #thisendsnow #savetheinnocence #justiceforpurity— Aakasha Essa (@aakashaessa) August 7, 2018
Voodoo Doughnut, where the magic is in the hole and good things come in pink boxes.
The Truth can not be hidden pic.twitter.com/p4DMAONYDN
Voodoo donuts is an undercover child trafficking ring, using pedo signs and double untandras pic.twitter.com/uuJUYEBCer— Shaun C. Borboa Sr. (@shaunborboa_209) August 6, 2018
The people like A Call for an Uprising who try to discredit @IsaacKappy are pedofile gatekeepers. #PizzaGate and #DoughnutGate are real and if you fight against this battle, the blood of these kids IS ON YOUR HANDS. Lets put these people away.— Jason Boss (@jbossman) August 9, 2018
The Voodoo Doughnut Facebook and Yelp pages are also getting spammed by the #DoughnutGate believers:
A manager at one Portland location of the chain (who requested not to be named) called the theory “absolutely ridiculous,” noting that the team did not have any immediate plans to respond to these allegations since “you can’t really argue with deranged people.” The employee also noted that things have been relatively normal at the store over the last week.
Hopefully, the bogus chatter about #DoughnutGate will die down soon, and people can resume arguing over which Voodoo doughnut is the best of the bunch.
• Online conspiracy theorists target Oregon donut shop with Pizzagate-like claims [Media Matters]
• Portland’s famous Voodoo Doughnut is the target of a new far-right conspiracy theory [Yahoo]