The outspoken right-wing commentator Joe Rogan has been accused of antisemitism following a recent podcast episode.
While speaking to MSNBC contributor Krystal Ball and Saagar Enjet, the Joe Rogan Experience host referenced a tweet from Rep. Ilhan Omar, who in 2019 tweet claimed that Israel’s defenders in the U.S. were motivated by money.
“It’s all about the Benjamins baby,” wrote Omar at the time.
.@joerogan saying “the idea that Jewish people are not into money is ridiculous. That’s like saying Italians aren’t into pizza” would make sense if Jews invented money and/or Italians had been massacred because of a conspiracy that they control the world through pizza. pic.twitter.com/odzZzFHIYG
— Ian Haworth (@ighaworth) February 7, 2023
The controversy magnet said about Omar on his show, “She’s talking about money. That’s not an anti-Semitic statement, I don’t think that is. It’s about, 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. It’s fucking stupid.”
Shortly after Rogan’s comments, Anti-Defamation League CEO Jonathan Greenblatt took to Twitter to call him out.
“Disturbing that at a time of rising anti-Jewish violence, when growing numbers of Americans believe in antisemitic conspiracy theories, [Joe Rogan] would use his immense platform to spew antisemitic tropes about Jews and money,” Greenblatt wrote.
Disturbing that at a time of rising anti-Jewish violence, when growing numbers of Americans believe in antisemitic conspiracy theories, @joerogan would use his immense platform to spew antisemitic tropes about Jews and money. https://t.co/O6o1i2nS9x
— Jonathan Greenblatt (@JGreenblattADL) February 7, 2023
He continued, “For centuries, people have used these longstanding tropes to spread vicious lies about the Jewish people. ‘Comedian’ or not, Rogan’s comments are no joke.” The tweet linked to an ADL article and video debunking the stereotype.
Others to call out Rogan included Rep. Josh Gottheimer of New Jersey and British comedian/Jews Don’t Count author David Baddiel:
For the hard of understanding, "Jews are into money" is not like "Italians are into pizza". Because unless my history lessons really missed something out, no-one has exterminated a large section of the entire Italian community because of their love for pepperoni.
— David Baddiel (@Baddiel) February 7, 2023
It’s despicable language like this that leads to attacks and threats against Jewish people.@JoeRogan has a massive platform and it’s infuriating to watch him and @krystalball promote blatant, dangerous antisemitic tropes, including those masquerading as anti-Israel sentiments. https://t.co/QCehASIlPk
— Rep Josh Gottheimer (@RepJoshG) February 7, 2023