On Wednesday, responding to the outrage surrounding the Left and the Biden administration attacking podcast host Joe Rogan, Brazilian right-wing president Jair Bolsonaro publicly supported Rogan, tweeting, “I’m not sure what @joerogan thinks about me or about my government, but it doesn’t matter. If freedom of speech means anything, it means that people should be free to say what they think, no matter if they agree or disagree with us. Stand your ground! Hugs from Brazil.”
– I'm not sure what @joerogan thinks about me or about my government, but it doesn't matter. If freedom of speech means anything, it means that people should be free to say what they think, no matter if they agree or disagree with us. Stand your ground! Hugs from Brazil. 👍
— Jair M. Bolsonaro (@jairbolsonaro) February 3, 2022
On Tuesday, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki urged Spotify to take action against Rogan after Spotify announced it would tag supposed controversial episodes with a warning label. As The Daily Wire reported, a reporter asked if Spotify “should go further than” just applying a new warning label.
“Well, last July, I, you probably know, but the Surgeon General also took the unprecedented step to issue an advisory on the risk of misinformation in public health, which is a very significant step,” Psaki said. “And amid that, he talked about the role social media platforms have, so our hope is that all major tech platforms, and all major news sources for that matter, be responsible and be vigilant to ensure the American people have access to accurate information on something as significant as COVID-19. That certainly includes Spotify.”
“So this disclaimer, it’s a positive step, but we want every platform to continue doing more to call out misinformation and disinformation will also uplifting, accurate information,” she continued. “ … But ultimately, you know, our view is it’s a, it’s a, it’s a good step. It’s a positive step, but there’s more that can be done.”
In January 2019, Bolsonaro, who survived a near-fatal knife attack during his campaign, stated, “We have a unique opportunity before us to reconstruct our country and rescue the hope of our compatriots. We are going to unite the people, rescue the family, respect religions and our Judeo-Christian tradition, combat gender ideology, conserving our values.” He announced Brazil’s “liberation from socialism, inverted values, the bloated state and political correctness.”
Bolsonaro continued, “Good citizens deserve the means to defend themselves,” adding he expected congressional support to provide “legal support” for police and asserting, “They deserve it and must be respected.”
In October 2018, after he was elected, Bolsonaro stated, “We cannot continue flirting with communism. … We are going to change the destiny of Brazil.”
On Sunday, Rogan responded to the attempts to cancel him, saying:
The podcast has been accused of spreading dangerous misinformation, specifically about two episodes, a little bit about some other ones, but specifically about two. One with Dr. Peter McCullough and one with Dr. Robert Malone. Dr. Peter McCullough is a cardiologist, and he is the most published physician in his field in history. Dr. Robert Malone owns nine patents on the creation of mRNA vaccine technology and is at least partially responsible for the creation of the technology that led to mRNA vaccines. Both these people are very highly credentialed, very intelligent, very accomplished people and they have an opinion, that’s different from the mainstream narrative. I wanted to hear what their opinion is.
I had them on and because of that, those episodes in particular, those episodes were labeled as being dangerous, they had dangerous misinformation in them. The problem I have with the term misinformation, especially today is that many of the things that we thought of as misinformation just a short while ago are now accepted as fact, like, for instance, eight months ago, if you said, “if you get vaccinated, you can still catch COVID and you can still spread COVID,” you’d be removed from social media, they would they would ban you from certain platforms. Now, that’s accepted as fact. If you said, I don’t think cloth masks work, you would be banned from social media. Now that’s openly and repeatedly stated on CNN. If you said I think it’s possible that COVID-19 came from a lab, you’d be banned from many social media platforms – now that’s on the cover of Newsweek. All of those theories that at one point in time were banned, were openly discussed by those two men that I had on my podcast that had been accused of dangerous misinformation.
I do not know if they’re right. I don’t know. Because I’m not a doctor. I’m not a scientist. I’m just a person who sits down and talks to people and has conversations with them. Do I get things wrong? Absolutely. I get things wrong, but I try to correct them. Whenever I get something wrong. I try to correct it because I’m interested in telling the truth. I’m interested in finding out what the truth is. And I’m interested in having interesting conversations with people that have differing opinions. I’m not interested in only talking to people that have one perspective. That’s one of the reasons why I had Sanjay Gupta on, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, who I respect very much, and I really enjoyed our conversation together. He has a different opinion than those men do. I had Dr. Michael Osterholm on at the very beginning of the pandemic, he is on President Biden’s COVID-19 advisory board. I had Dr. Peter Hotez on, who is a vaccine expert. I’m interested in finding out what is correct and I’m also finding out how people come to these conclusions and what the facts are.
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