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Joe Rogan Is Wrong. COVID-19 Vaccines Aren’t Likely to Cause Super Mutants, Researcher Says



“It’s a bizarre line of logic that some hypothetical possibility down the line would hold back lifesaving medicine now,” the researcher who wrote a paper recently cited by Rogan told Forbes. “There are 600,000 Americans dead so far. The vast majority of those deaths are vaccine-preventable.

Rogan Erroneously Cites Study 

Contrary to what Joe Rogan said on Friday’s episode of his self-titled podcast, COVID-19 vaccinations are not likely to create a super-strain of the virus.

In the episode, which features Free Range American host Evan Hafer, Rogan cited a 2015 paper titled “Imperfect Vaccination Can Enhance the Transmission of Highly Virulent Pathogens.”

Rogan then read a single line from the paper’s abstract, which states, “Vaccines that keep hosts alive but still allow transmission could thus allow very virulent strains to circulate in a population.”

“That situation where the vaccine just kind of protects you from serious damage — protects you from really being badly hospitalized or death — but doesn’t stop you from getting the virus, can possibly lead to more potent viruses,” Rogan concluded.

Scientifically, Rogan’s takeaway has absolutely no basis and only serves to highlight the danger that comes from cherry-picking studies from a field he has no background in or serious understanding of.

In fact, Andrew Read — the lead author of that 2015 paper who is also a biology professor at Pennsylvania State University — has since told Forbes, “We’re talking [about] a very different virus and very different vaccines.”

The studies that Read conducted and later published in 2015 involved Marek’s disease virus, a herpesvirus which affects poultry such as chickens. 

“The details in biology really matter a lot,” Read told Forbes. “The chicken vaccines we worked with… definitely reduced disease, severity and death.”

However, unlike what has proven to be the case with top COVID vaccines, the chicken vaccine “didn’t stop transmission at all.” As Read noted, that’s the key difference between this paper and COVID-19.

“At the moment, the vast majority of the replication is happening in unvaccinated people,” he explained. “You can tell that because the majority of cases in the hospital are unvaccinated individuals.”

“That’s the majority of transmission. Every time a virus replicates, it can mutate. So the evolution is, right now, occurring in the body of people who are not vaccinated. Rogan is completely wrong trying to deduce anything else.”

Rogan Claims Breakthrough Cases Were Unforeseen

The argument that COVID vaccines could lead a super mutant isn’t the only false and potentially dangerous statement Rogan made on his podcast — and that’s still excluding his very extreme prediction regarding vaccine passports.

“This is a fact: just a couple of months ago, the idea of a breakthrough case was unheard of,” Rogan falsely stated. “Nobody heard of anybody catching COVID that had a vaccine, right? That was the whole idea; you get a vaccine, you don’t have to worry about it. But now we know, not only can you get it, but you can spread it.” 

That statement is about as far from fact as it could be. It has been known since day one of COVID vaccine development that some people would still be able to catch and spread the virus. In fact, that aspect was even known prior to COVID with other vaccines because that is how vaccines work. 

No vaccine is 100% effective, but the fact that two of the first COVID vaccines are over 90% effective is astonishing. At the beginning of the pandemic, scientists were simply hoping to be able to create an initial vaccine that was at least 50% effective, meaning that half of vaccinated people would still contract the virus. Even if that had been the case, Rogan’s transmissibility comments would still be inaccurate.

Though Read noted that it is possible a mutant springs up from the vaccinated population, mutants are much more likely to emerge and gain traction through the unvaccinated. In fact, that’s how the delta variant emerged.

“It’s a bizarre line of logic that some hypothetical possibility down the line would hold back lifesaving medicine now,” he told Forbes. “There are 600,000 Americans dead so far. The vast majority of those deaths are vaccine-preventable. There’s not a single scenario that would argue in favor of not using [vaccines] to save the next hundred thousand. Not one scenario.”

Read also explained that the current COVID vaccines aren’t the last we’ll ever see. Second- and third-generation COVID vaccines are currently being developed, in part because COVID will possibly become a seasonal virus much like the flu.

“There’s tons of things we can do in the future,” Read said. “Right now, we need to vaccinate as much as possible.”

See what others are saying: (Forbes) (The Hill) (New York Post)


“Emancipation” Producer Apologizes, Hopes He Did Not “Distract” From Film’s Message By Bringing Photo of Enslaved Man to Premiere 



He said he plans on donating his collection of historical images to appropriate institutions.

McFarland Brings “Whipped Pete” Photo to Premiere 

“Emancipation” producer Joey McFarland apologized on Sunday after facing backlash for bringing the original 1863 photo of the enslaved person the film is based on to the premiere. 

“I wholeheartedly apologize to everyone I have offended by bringing a photograph of Peter to the Emancipation premiere,” he wrote in a statement on Instagram. “My intent was to honor this remarkable man and to remind the general public that his image not only brought about change in 1863 but still resonates and promotes change today.”

The photo, frequently dubbed “Whipped Peter,” is one of the most famous images depicting the gruesome realities of slavery in America. He is facing away from the camera, revealing the severe scarring all across his back. According to the Library of Congress, the formerly enslaved man was actually named Gordon. Will Smith plays him in “Emancipation,” which follows his escape from slavery.

While walking the red carpet of the film’s premiere, McFarland carried the photo with him.  

“I have the photo. This is the original photograph from 1863,” he told Variety. “I wanted it to be here tonight. I wanted a piece of Peter to be here tonight.”

While lamenting the fact that so many historical artifacts have not been properly preserved, McFarland told Variety that he “took it upon [him]self to curate and build a collection for future generations.” He said his collection will be donated after he dies. 

His remarks were met with swift criticism from those who thought it was inappropriate for McFarland to not just own the picture, but to bring it to a Hollywood event. 

“Why do you own the photograph? Why did you bring it to a movie premiere if the intent is to preserve it respectfully?” The Black List founder Franklin Leonard tweeted.

“I don’t know, man, but bringing ‘a piece of Peter’ that you ‘own’ to the red carpet of a movie that’s personally enriching you so that you can collect more slave memorabilia that you’ll keep until your death,” he added along with a giphy of Kenan Thompson saying “yikes.”

McFarland Acknowledges Historical Photos “Belong to the World”

Others argued that the photo should belong to Gordon’s family. 

“Being in possession of a symbol that reflects our trauma is exactly what our oppressor would do. He is his ancestor’s child,” another person added. 

In his apology, McFarland said that he hopes his actions “don’t distract from the film’s message, Peter’s story and just how much impact he had on the world.”

Throughout the development of “Emancipation,” McFarland said he discovered many photos of overlooked individuals with important historical stories. He said he always planned to donate them and believes “there is no better time to begin that process than now.”

“These photographs, which existed before me, will be around long after I am gone; they belong to the world,” he wrote.

See what others are saying: (Variety) (The Hollywood Reporter) (The Daily Beast)

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Joe Rogan Holds Spot As Top Podcaster on Spotify in 2022



Earlier this year, some threatened to boycott the platform over Rogan and the health misinformation he shared on his show. 

For the third year in a row, “The Joe Rogan Experience” was the number one podcast on Spotify, the company revealed in its yearly “Wrapped” feature on Wednesday. 

“The Joe Rogan Experience” became exclusive to Spotify in 2020 after the host signed a lucrative deal with the audio streaming platform. “Call Her Daddy” by Alex Cooper, also a Spotify exclusive, followed Rogan on the charts. “Anything Goes With Emma Chamberlain,” which will become exclusive to the service next year, came in third.

Rogan’s podcast has made several headlines over the last year as the podcaster faced backlash from medical professionals and major musicians for touting COVID-19 misinformation. Niel Young asked to have his music removed from Spotify in protest of the company’s deal with Rogan, and several other artists soon followed. 

Just a few days later, several clips resurfaced of Rogan using a racial slur. Many called to boycott Spotify for platforming Rogan, but his popularity did not seem to fade by the year’s end. 

There are over four million podcasts available to stream on Spotify and over the last year, the platform has expanded into new markets. 

It also has started launching podcasts from several high-profile figures, including Kim Kardashian’s “The System,” and Meghan Markle’s “Archetypes.” Both of those debuted mid-year and did not crack the annual top-five list.

See what others are saying: (Spotify) (Variety) (Forbes)

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Comedian Gives David Beckham Ultimatum: Exit Role at Qatar World Cup Or £10K in Donations Gets Shredded



“Not just the money, but also your status as a gay icon will be shredded,” Joe Lycett said in a video.

Pressure on Beckham

Comedian Joe Lycett posted a video on Sunday saying he would shred £10,000 if soccer star David Beckham does not pull out of his deal to be an ambassador for the Qatar World Cup. 

Ahead of the event, which kicks off on Nov. 20, many have been raising concerns about human rights abuses in Qatar. The country criminalizes homosexuality, and it can be punishable by death. 

Beckham’s deal to represent the country was reportedly worth £10 million, and many are frustrated that the athlete took such a big check from a country with known anti-LGBTQ laws. In his video, Lycett noted that Beckham has been openly supportive of his gay fans and was the first premiere footballer to do a photoshoot with a gay magazine. 

In an attempt to get Beckham to bow out of his role, Lycett, who is pansexual, offered an ultimatum.  

“If you end your relationship with Qatar, I’ll donate this £10,000 of my own money, that’s a grand for every million you’re reportedly getting, to charities that support queer people in football,” he stated. “However, if you do not, at midday next Sunday, I will throw this money into a shredder.” 

“Not just the money, but also your status as a gay icon will be shredded.” 

Beckham’s Reputation “Shredded”

Lycett said he would livestream the money shredding if that’s what the situation comes to. If Beckham does not back out of the World Cup, Lycett noted he will be forced to “commit what might be a crime,” as destroying legal tender is against the law in the U.K.

“Although even then, I reckon I’ll get off more lightly than I would if I got caught whacking off a lad in Doha,” Lycett quipped.

Lycett then linked to a website titled, which includes a written version of his message, as well as a countdown to when he will either shred the cash or send it to a non-profit. 

Lycett is not the only U.K star to raise concerns about issues in Qatar. Singer Dua Lipa shut down speculation that she would be performing at the World Cup over the weekend by saying she has no intentions to visit the country until “it has fulfilled all the human rights pledges it made when it won the right to host” the event. 

Other stars, however, including BTS’s Jung Kook, are slated to take the stage. 

See what others are saying: (CNN) (The Hollywood Reporter) (BBC News)

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