Comedian and podcast host Joe Rogan will fully refund any fans who bought tickets to his upcoming show in New York City but do not want to comply with Mayor Bill de Blasio’s vaccine requirements to attend.
Rogan said on his podcast last week that he’s sold 13,000 tickets for his stand-up comedy show at Madison Square Garden on Saturday, Oct. 2, but was worried because he personally opposes vaccine requirements and New York City has mandated that residents show proof of vaccination to go out in public, including entertainment venues.
“I don’t know what to do, I’m stuck in this situation,” Rogan complained.
Sticking with his principles, the comedian said that any fan who wants a refund because they refuse to get vaccinated and can’t make the show will get one.
“If someone has an ideological or physiological reason for not getting vaccinated, I don’t want to force them to get vaccinated to see a f***ing stupid comedy show,” Rogan said. “And now they say that everybody has to be vaccinated, and I want everybody to know that you can get your money back.”
Earlier in August, Rogan railed against vaccine passports, arguing that coercing people to get vaccinated would bring the United States “one step closer to a dictatorship.”
“That’s what’s going to happen with the vaccine passport,” he said. “That’s what’s going to happen if they close borders. You can’t enter New York City unless you have your papers. You can’t go here unless you have that. You can’t get on a plane unless you do what I say,” Rogan said on his podcast, predicting that the government is “not going to give that power up.”
His comments were heavily criticized on social media, with some calling for Spotify to deplatform Rogan for spreading “disinformation” on vaccines.
But despite what his critics say, Rogan has insisted that he is not anti-vaccine. Back in April, he explained that he thought people who were at low-risk of serious illness from COVID-19 and believe they don’t need the vaccine should be free to make the choice for themselves.
“I am not an anti-vax person,” Rogan said. “In fact, I said I believe they are safe and I encourage many people to take them. I just said if you’re a young, healthy person, you don’t need it. Their argument was you need it for other people. But that’s a different conversation. And yes, that makes sense.”
He added: “But if you’re like 21 years old, and you say to me, ‘Should I get vaccinated?’ I’ll go, ‘No.’ Are you healthy? Are you a healthy person? Like, look, don’t do anything stupid, but you should take care of yourself.”
“You should — if you’re a healthy person, and you’re exercising all the time, and you’re young, and you’re eating well, like, I don’t think you need to worry about this,” he said.