Rogan announced on Sept. 1 that he fell ill with COVID-19, but rebounded from the respiratory disease within a few days. Rogan said he "threw the kitchen sink at it," which included treatments of monoclonal antibodies, ivermectin, Z-Pak, and prednisone. Rogan pointed out that he was prescribed these treatments by a doctor.
The media zeroed in on Rogan's use of ivermectin, an anti-parasitic medication that is is listed on the World Health Organization's "essential medicines list." There have reportedly been 3.7 billion ivermectin doses distributed globally in the past 30 years to treat parasitic infections in humans. The Food and Drug Administration acknowledges that there is a human version of ivermectin and one designated for animals, but does not recommend the use of either to treat COVID-19.
Despite knowing that ivermectin is a drug made for humans, the media pushed a narrative that Rogan was taking a "horse dewormer," "horse paste," and a "livestock drug." Grabien created a compilation of the media attempting to discredit Rogan by saying the podcast giant was taking a "horse dewormer."
CNN was one of the mainstream media networks that repeatedly asserted Rogan was taking "horse dewormer." So much so that Rogan openly contemplated suing the network for lying about his treatment with a doctor-prescribed medication for humans.
"They keep saying I'm taking horse dewormer," Rogan said last month. "I literally got it from a doctor. It's an American company. They won the Nobel Prize in 2015 for use in human beings and CNN is saying I'm taking horse dewormer. They must know that's a lie."
CNN contributor Mary Katharine Ham slammed her own employer for its "dishonest" reporting on Rogan's COVID-19 treatment.
"Rogan is right that it's dishonest to say he took horse dewormer when he did not. It was irresistible to dunk on him for a lot of people, so they went with that instead of sticking to 'hey, this anti-parasitic isn't recommended for COVID treatment,' which would've been credible," Ham said.
Despite CNN besmirching him on multiple occasions on various TV programs on the network, Rogan welcomed CNN chief medical correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta on the massively popular "The Joe Rogan Experience."
During the mostly friendly three-hour podcast episode, Rogan confronted Gupta on why his network is "lying" about him taking horse dewormer.
"They're lying at your network about people taking human drugs versus drugs for veterinary," Rogan told Gupta.
"It's a lie. It's a lie on a news network … and it's a lie that they're conscious of. It's not a mistake," Rogan ripped CNN. "They're unfavorably framing it as veterinary medicine."
Gupta finally admitted, "They shouldn't have said that."
Days after Gupta's appearance on "The Joe Rogan Experience," he appeared on CNN's "Don Lemon Tonight" show. Lemon doubled down on the narrative that Rogan was taking "horse dewormer."
"[Rogan] did say something about ivermectin that I think wasn't actually correct about CNN and lying," Lemon told Gupta. "Ivermectin is a drug that is commonly used as a horse dewormer. So, it is not a lie to say that the drug is used as a horse dewormer. I think that's important. And it is not approved for COVID. Correct?"
Gupta replied, "That's right. That's correct. It is not approved for COVID. And, you're right. I mean, the FDA even put out a statement ... that said, 'You're not a horse, you're not a cow, stop taking this stuff'" in reference to ivermectin.
Rogan roared back at Lemon and CNN for continuing to falsely claim that he took veterinary medicine. During an interview this week with cultural commentator Michael Malice on "The Joe Rogan Experience," the podcast king bashed Lemon as a "dumb motherf*****."
"This is what's so funny about that. They don't understand that when they say things that are absolutely untrue, it diminishes their authority. They're not even aware of what they're doing," Rogan said of CNN. "When Don Lemon goes on with Sanjay Gupta and says, 'Actually, it really is a veterinary medicine. It really is horse dewormer.'"
"This was the lie- he goes, 'It's not a lie to say it's also used as horse medicine.' But that's not what you said," Malice added. "You didn't you say, 'This drug, which also is used for horses.' Of what relevance is that?"
"It doesn't have any relevance," Rogan replied. "It's exactly what you're talking about with penicillin and with a gigantic number of medicines that also have veterinary applications. But by doing that, you just, you just proved my point."
"They don't even understand what they just did. You think no one's, like, it's going to end with you? Because it used to be that way. They would say something and no one would have recourse. But when you're saying something, and then the person you're saying it about has literally tens times the audience you do, you dumb motherf*****. Do you know what you did? You just proved my point," Rogan added.
Fox News reported this week, "Don Lemon continues to suffer in the 10 pm ET primetime slot, averaging just 619,000 viewers two weeks into October, a 15% drop from his 724,000 average last month."
Meanwhile, Rogan reportedly received 190 million monthly downloads in 2019, with approximately 15 episodes a month.
Rogan then gave some advice to CNN president Jeff Zucker, who Rogan said he likes and knows him from when he hosted "Fear Factor" and Zucker was the head of NBC at the time.
"They need better people. They need people that are respected because it's not that CNN is beyond repair," Rogan claimed. "Look, I know Jeff Zucker… He's a nice guy… He's a great guy. It's just there, it's like everything else, these people are managing at scale. And but you can't allow people to say things that are absolutely untrue when you have a f***ing news organization."
CNN issued a statement on the row with Rogan to Washington Post media critic Erik Wemple this week, and defended saying the stand-up comedian was taking medicine for livestock.
"The issue is that a powerful voice in the media, who by example and through his platform, sowed doubt in the proven and approved science of vaccines while promoting the use of an unproven treatment for covid-19 — a drug developed to ward off parasites in farm animals," the cable TV network stated. "The only thing CNN did wrong here was bruise the ego of a popular podcaster who pushed dangerous conspiracy theories and risked the lives of millions of people in doing so."
Rogan responded to CNN's statement on his podcast, "And it's not about my feelings… I like it when my feelings get hurt. How about that? I like it. I hurt my own feelings. Like there's not a f***ing human being that's a worse critic of me than me, alright? That's not what the problem is."
Joe Rogan responds to Don Lemon Doubling Down with Sanjay Gupta www.youtube.com