As the most popular podcaster today, many of Joe Rogan’s comments on his show draw a lot of attention. Most recently, the long-time UFC analyst went under fire after some statements he made about young people not needing to get a COVID-19 vaccine.
Spotify’s Joe Rogan encourages "healthy" young people not to get a coronavirus vaccine. His show is Spotify's most popular podcast.— Alex Paterson (@AlexPattyy) April 27, 2021
“If you're like 21 years old, and you say to me, should I get vaccinated? I'll go no.” pic.twitter.com/5dX98xUaHS
Rogan’s comments drew so much attention, that they even reached chief medical advisor, Dr. Anthony Fauci, who called them “incorrect.” After various medical experts spoke out, Rogan went on to explain himself during the most recent episode of his podcast with fellow comedian Andrew Santino.
“I’m not an anti-vaxx person. In fact, I said, I believe they’re safe and I encourage many people to take them. My parents were vaccinated,” Rogan explained.
“I just said I don’t think that if you’re a young, healthy person that you need it. Their argument was you need it for other people (so you don’t transmit the virus). That makes more sense. That’s a different argument, that’s a different conversation.”
Several doctors spoke out against Rogan, saying that vaccines not only prevent the spread of the deadly virus, it also hinders “generation and transmission of new variants.”
As for Rogan now saying vaccines are only to protect other people, doctors also vehemently disagree, with one even saying “Mr. Rogan should acknowledge that his comments may well cost lives.”
Experts note how in some states, more young people are admitted to hospitals than any other age group, and cite how many tend to overestimate their physical fitness and health. Apart from death and hospitalizations, there are also a large number of young people — including several MMA fighters that Rogan commentate on — that get “persistent long-haul symptoms.”
Rogan went on to admit that he does say “something stupid” at times but also shifts some of the blame.
“These are not, like, planned statements. Let’s be real clear,” he said. “When I say something stupid, I’m not thinking about what I’m gonna say before I say it. I’m just saying it. I don’t have an off-air and on-air voice. I don’t. I have me. This is it. I got through the f—ng net and I’m swimming through open waters. And that’s just how I live.
“The problem is today, everything’s all headlines and highlights, and it’s all clickbait. Which is fine. That’s the business.
“There’s a lot of people out there that have to make a f—ng living. And what’s the best way to make a living? Well, here’s one way. Take a jackass like me, go over their podcast, go over this three-hour, drunken, ridiculous podcast.
“A lot of times we’re drinking or we’re high and I say stupid shit. I get it. And if you mind that, and you make money off of that, more power to you. I don’t care. I’m happy for you. But just don’t lie.”
“I’m not a doctor. I’m a f—ng moron. And I’m a cagefighting commentator who’s a dirty stand-up comedian. We just told you, I’m drunk most of the time. And I do testosterone, and I smoke a lot of weed. But I’m not a respected source of information, even for me.
“I at least try to be honest with what I’m saying.”
Rogan may not be the most reputable source of such important pieces of information, but he does hold a huge influence on listeners from different demographics. His official YouTube page currently has 10.6 million followers and counting. And in 2020, Spotify ranked his podcast number one globally on its Most Popular list.