Gidon Lev said keeping people healthy and saving them from suffering is the exact opposite of what the Germans did.
An 86-year-old Holocaust survivor has gone viral after calling out Joe Rogan for comparing Coronavirus vaccine mandates with the Nazi regime. Gidon Lev, who lost 26 members of his family including his father in the holocaust, slammed Rogan for promoting "hate, antisemitism, and possibly even more violence" the latter stirred the pot of vaccine hesitancy. Rogan had suggested that "American freedom" was at stake as companies and the government-mandated vaccines but Lev slammed the podcaster for comparing civic responsibility of the people to Nazis killing more than 6 million people.
Rogan's video on Instagram featured his narration as he interspersed the video with images of Adolf Hitler's Nazi salute, Nazi Germany during World War II, and vaccine mandates. "As soon as you see something, anything, that comes along and inhibits your freedom, you should be very cautious," said Rogan. The video was also set against ominous instrumental music. Gidon Lev didn't mince his words as he posted two videos slamming Rogan's take on the issue. Lev captioned the video: Dear Joe Rogan from a holocaust survivor. "Mr. Joe Rogan... I am an 86-year-old survivor of the Holocaust and I saw your video on American freedom and the COVID vaccine," starts Levy in the video. "It included images of the Holocaust and of Adolf Hitler, the monster who murdered my father, 26 members of my family, and 6 million Jews and others in gas chambers, in ditches, in firing squads, and even in gas trucks."
"You are absolutely not promoting freedom. Remove the video immediately. It is disgusting, thoughtless, and careless. I am shocked by your lack of sensitivity," he said, before concluding, "You want to come speak about freedom, come and talk with me." Lev, who goes by @thetrueadventures on TikTok is known for his educational videos about the holocaust. He has more than 78k followers on the platform and has more than 1.1m likes. Lev was born in 1935 in the Czech Republic and was taken to a concentration camp with his family when he was just 6. Everyone in his family died but him and his mother. They were liberated from a concentration camp in Terezin. He wrote about his life in a biography titled: The True Adventures of Gidon Lev: Rascal Holocaust Survivor Optimist in 2020.
Many conservative voices have compared vaccine mandates to dictatorship and especially Hitler's regime. Lev had addressed these comparisons in an interview with Haaretz in September. "Keeping people healthy and saving them from suffering is the exact opposite of what the Germans did," he said. "I want to explain to these people that forcing us to wear a star wasn't for the purpose of identifying us; it was to dehumanize us. Doing something to try to save people's lives with a vaccine is completely different."
Rogan using his platform to slam vaccine mandates is likely to foment similar views in his viewers. His podcast — The Joe Rogan Experience — has been Spotify's most popular podcast since it debuted on the platform. Rogan was also found promoting ivermectin to fight Coronavirus despite the FDA calling it "dangerous" in large doses and urging people not to use it to treat the disease.
This clip from the Daily Show of people fighting against seat belt mandates in the 80s is absolutely surreal from start to finish given today's climate on both masks and COVID vaccines. pic.twitter.com/IiR8iavlyN— Josh Jordan (@NumbersMuncher) September 16, 2021
The resistance against seat belt mandates when it was first introduced in the 80s echoes much of arguments made against vaccine mandates. While many argue that vaccine mandates are a matter of choice but it is only so as long you're not potentially endangering themselves and others. NBA legend Kareem Abdul-Jabbar explained it beautifully as he called for unvaccinated NBA Players to be kicked off the team. "The NBA should insist that all players and staff are vaccinated or remove them from the team," said Abdul-Jabbar, reported Rollingstone. "There is no room for players who are willing to risk the health and lives of their teammates, the staff, and the fans simply because they are unable to grasp the seriousness of the situation or do the necessary research," he said.