Joe Rogan clarifies vaccine comments: ‘I’m not an anti-vax person’
Popular Spotify podcast host Joe Rogan on Thursday sought to clarify his recent controversial comments that young, healthy people don’t need a COVID-19 vaccine.
During a conversation on his most recent episode of “The Joe Rogan Experience,” the comedian made it clear that he wasn’t anti-vaccine, and people should not necessarily be looking to him for medical advice.
“I’m not a doctor, I’m a f—ing moron, and I’m a cage fighting commentator … I’m not a respected source of information, even for me. But I at least try to be honest about what I’m saying,” Rogan said.
Rogan’s initial comments drew backlash from multiple critics as harmful and irresponsible, including from many infectious disease experts and even Biden administration officials.
“You’re talking about yourself in a vacuum,” said White House chief medical adviser Anthony Fauci, when asked about Rogan’s comments.
White House communications director Kate Bedingfield also joined in the criticism.
“I guess my first question would be, did Joe Rogan become a medical doctor while we weren’t looking? I’m not sure that taking scientific and medical advice from Joe Rogan is perhaps the most productive way for people to get their information,” Bedingfield said.
Rogan on Thursday said he was just trying to make a point about vaccinating vulnerable people, and that a young healthy person doesn’t necessarily need to be vaccinated.
“There’s some legitimate science behind this… I’m not an anti-vaxx person,” Rogan said. “Their argument was, you need [to be vaccinated to protect] other people. That makes more sense, but that’s a different argument, it’s a different conversation.”
Rogan added that he thinks his comments were blown out of proportion, and attacked the media for clickbait headlines.
Rogan said he had been planning to get the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, but couldn’t find the time in his schedule before it temporarily paused.
Still, this is not the first time Rogan has spread misinformation on his podcast, which is the top streaming show on Spotify and regularly draws millions of listeners.
He apologized in September for sharing false information about fires on the West Coast and at one point gave noted Sandy Hook school shooting denier Alex Jones a platform.
Spotify has taken action against other instances of coronavirus misinformation on its platform, removing a song in March claiming vaccines have microchips in them and a full podcast in January that was rife with conspiracies.
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