Video source: YouTube, TODAY
Top White House officials blasted comedian and podcast host Joe Rogan on Wednesday after he advised his younger listeners against getting the COVID-19 vaccine.
During an appearance on NBC’s “The Today Show,” Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation’s top infectious disease expert and President Joe Biden’s chief medical adviser, called Rogan’s comments “incorrect” and explained why he takes issue with the remarks made.
“The reason why is, you’re talking about yourself in a vacuum,” he said. “You’re worried about yourself getting infected and the likelihood that you’re not going to get any symptoms. But you can get infected and will get infected if you put yourself at risk.”
As Fauci noted, even people who do not show symptoms of COVID-19 are at risk of “propagating the outbreak, because it is likely that you, even if you have no symptoms, may inadvertently and innocently then infect someone else, who might infect someone who really could have a problem with a severe outcome.”
“So if you want to worry about yourself, and not society, then that’s OK,” he continued. “But if you say to yourself, even if I get infected, I could do damage to somebody else…That’s the reason why you’ve got to be careful and get vaccinated.”
When asked directly by TODAY host Savannah Guthrie if young, healthy people should get vaccinated, Fauci replied, "Absolutely."
White House communications director Kate Bedingfield also rebuked Rogan, noting the podcast host’s lack of medical credentials.
“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 told CNN.
On an April 23 episode of “The Joe Rogan Experience,” Rogan said he supported vulnerable people getting vaccinated but that he would not recommend it for people who are young and healthy.
“If you’re like 21 years old, and you say to me, ‘Should I get vaccinated?’ I’ll go no,” he said. “If you’re a healthy person, and you’re exercising all the time, and you’re young, and you’re eating well, I don’t think you need to worry about this.”
Politico noted that the comments made on Rogan’s show – the most popular podcast on Spotify – come as the Biden Administration is working to persuade those who are vaccine hesitant to get their shots.
On Wednesday, Bedingfield acknowledged to CNN that while Rogan’s remarks could cause listeners to “question” the need to get vaccinated, recent polls have shown that more Americans are willing to get jabbed.
“I think what we’re seeing, and what we have seen in the data and what we’ve seen as people continue to get vaccinated, is the people who are most influential in encouraging people to get vaccinated are their friends, their neighbors, people who have received the shot themselves who they know and they trust. And so, what we see is the number of people who say that they are willing to get vaccinated is rising,” she said.
An Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research poll puts the figure at 75%, an increase from 67% in January.
A Monmouth University poll reported 21% of Americans said they would not get the vaccine, down from 24% in January.
The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported that 43% of the US population has received at least one dose of the vaccine, and 30% of Americans are fully vaccinated.
Source: Equities News