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February 9, 2023 12:06 pm

Joe Rogan Joins Ilhan Omar in Using Antisemitic Speech

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avatar by Alan Zeitlin


Joe Rogan, host of The Joe Rogan Experience podcast on Spotify. Photo: Screenshot.

When I was an assistant teacher for a second-grade class, one student pushed another. I told him not to do it again.

“But Daniel pushed someone, too,” he said.

Joe Rogan unfortunately was working with a second-grade mentality on his podcast when he defended the comments of Congresswoman Ilhan Omar (D-MN).

Omar was recently kicked off the Foreign Affairs Committee for one of her many antisemitic statements. She famously tweeted “It’s all about the Benjamins” in reference to US policy vis-à-vis Israel’s government.

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”That’s not an antisemitic statement, I don’t think that is,” Rogan said on his podcast. “Benjamins are money. You know, the idea that Jewish people are not into money is ridiculous. That’s like saying Italians aren’t into pizza…”

Rogan certainly knows a lot about martial arts, and how to build an unmatched podcast following, but he doesn’t know anything about antisemitism.

Rogan added that Democrat Rep. Adam Schiff (CA) said things that were not true in relation to former President Trump and Russia. Whatever your opinion is regarding Schiff, we are talking about two different people and statements, and sometimes it’s important to stay on task and on topic.

If Rogan wanted to make a different argument, that’s fine, but the veracity of whatever Schiff did or did not say has nothing to do with Omar.

First off, pizza has never influenced policy. If he would have said, “Jews love knishes,” that would have been fine. The modern birthplace of pizza is widely believed to be Naples, Italy. Do you think Jews created money?

The guest on his show noted that money is used by all lobbyists. So why single out Jews and Israel? Rogan may be the top podcaster in the world and earns a huge contract from Spotify, partly because he can interview a wide range of guests on different topics, but he should bring back Ben Shapiro (not that I agree with Shapiro on everything) and say what he said to him and see if he gets any pushback.

How about Omar’s tweet that “Israel has hypnotized the world.” How exactly did that work?

Rogan clearly knows his power and his reach, and doesn’t care about responsibility and knows he is untouchable.

Rogan is a great UFC announcer and interviewer. He is obviously an extremely gifted podcaster. But he should think more carefully about his words, not only because they do harm, but because they can result in violence.

Rogan should know his history.

On January 30, 1939, Adolf Hitler gave a speech to the Reichstag in which he famously said: “Today, I will once more be a prophet. If the international Jewish financiers in and outside Europe should succeed in plunging nations once more into a world war, then the result will not be the bolshevization of the earth and this victory of Jewry, but the annihilation of the Jewish race in Europe!”

Hitler had his plan to go to war, and like many, his plan was to blame the Jews. Aside from Hitler’s speaking ability, he was able to gain power by capitalizing on the desperation of people in a poor economic time.

We are in a poor economic period now in America.

Jews were moneylenders due to the Christian prohibition of usury, and that is one reason that Omar’s stereotype arose. I would hope Rogan is aware of this.

When Kyrie Irving was suspended for his antisemitic comments, there were thousands of comments online blaming Jewish money and the Jewish media. We also know what Kanye West said about Hitler. We know about rising antisemitism in America.

Yes, Joe Rogan, there are Jews that love money. And Christians that love money. And Muslims that love money. And atheists that love money. And you apparently love money. How are you spending your hundreds of millions of dollars? I bet not just on cigars and weed.

All politicians consider lobbying money and their chances of getting re-elected when voting on any policy. This is true of any issue. Why single out Israel?

To be clear, nobody believes Israel should not face criticism. Anyone is free to critique specific Israeli policies, and some of the strongest criticism comes from Jewish journalists in Israel. That’s different than spreading antisemitic tropes. And to pretend it was only one comment that got Omar in trouble is not intellectually honest. Rogan should do some research, and know what he is talking about.

Rogan may not realize that his words have power, but they have a lot of power and can do great harm if they’re not checked.

The author is a writer based in New York.

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