An 86-year-old man who survived the Holocaust has gone viral on TikTok for a series of videos in which he criticized podcaster Joe Rogan for comparing vaccine mandates to Nazism and the mass murder of the Third Reich.
Gidon Lev posted his videos after Rogan shared a video to Instagram last month warning people that pandemic measures add up to the erosion of American freedom and suggested they may be harbingers of a coming dictatorship.
In his videos, Lev accused Rogan of promoting "hate, anti-semitism, and... violence."
See the first video below.
Dear #joerogan from a #holocaustsurvivor 😐 #foryoupage #stopcomparing #neveragain #fypシ #fyp #istandwithgidon #getvaccinated #stophate #jewish
Speaking of his own experiences in the Holocaust, Lev painted a picture of Rogan's video that makes it seem not only ignorant and crass, but downright dangerous.
Speaking directly to Rogan, Lev said:
"[Your video] included images of the Holocaust and Adolf Hitler, the monster who murdered my father, twenty-six members of my family, and six million Jews and others."
Lev then posted a second video where he continued excoriating Rogan's statements.[tiktok_embed https://www.tiktok.com/@thetrueadventures/video/7013044791566945538?_d=secCgYIASAHKAESPgo8gIeucqMG10DhftgjZud9N7tWWHr9YB3d1WCp%2BHAY072K21BsJK4VKH1aoVK0v1Lh6csfqymUHb%2FwTuREGgA%3D&checksum=65beafae421617d1e7c6920e289fe7a888d5d43091d1a75693a73375a36b8664&language=en&preview_pb=0&sec_user_id=MS4wLjABAAAAbnxoAPiuvR1pT8343C1YdT5l5x0kmIklIIX7ApfqsBf-EfbhbBNAabEBguIWR_ir&share_app_id=1233&share_item_id=7013044791566945538&share_link_id=dfb78454-1a4a-4e18-80a2-a5375801b108&source=h5_m×tamp=1633536345&u_code=dkf6id1cggc3ac&user_id=7005339343330051077&utm_campaign=client_share&utm_medium=android&utm_source=copy&_r=1 expand=1]
"You are absolutely not promoting freedom... You should apologize to us all. Remove the video immediately...
"...It is disgusting and thoughtless and careless, and I am shocked by your lack of sensitivity."
Lev concluded his message with a direct invitation to Rogan:
"You want to speak about freedom? Come and speak to me."
Rogan's video, entitled "Freedom," features violent clips of Nazis and Hitler along with visual paeans to American military might.
Playing beneath it is a recording of Rogan comparing vaccine mandates to the seizure of Americans' civil rights by the government--much as Hitler's Third Reich did to Jews and other minorities in Nazi Germany.
Comparing the management of a pandemic to the mass deportation and systematic murder of six million Jews and 11 million other minorities has become a frequent refrain among those on the right, especially the far right.
So-called "vaccine passports" draw particular ire, with many on the right comparing them to the yellow stars of David the Third Reich required Jews to wear.
Rogan's video is full of such claims, along with revisionist history, outright factual inaccuracies (America did not invent democracy, for the record) and even subtle calls to violence.
In an interview last month with Jewish news magazine Haaretz, Lev explained why claims like the ones Rogan makes in his video are so patently and dangerously absurd.
"Keeping people healthy and saving them from suffering is the exact opposite of what the Germans did."
"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."
Lev's fellow Tiktokers shared his outrage about Rogan's comments.
Rogan, whose podcast The Joe Rogan Experience is the #1 podcast on Spotify, where it airs exclusively, has repeatedly featured alt-right figures like Proud Boys founder Gavin McInnes, and has frequently trafficked in disinformation about the pandemic.
Rogan recently lauded veterinary drug ivermectin as an effective treatment for the virus, an unapproved treatment that has resulted in several people dying after using the drug to self-treat the virus.