Independent journalist Alex Rosen confronted Dr. Peter Hotez outside his home after comedian Joe Rogan offered $100,000 to debate Democratic presidential candidate Robert F. Kennedy (RFK) Jr. on The Joe Rogan Experience.
In the video, Rosen approaches Hotez with a handshake outside the scientist’s house.
“So are you not like gonna debate RKF Jr. on Joe Rogan’s podcast?” Rosen asks Hotez, who dismissively replies, “Come on.”
“That’s harassing,” Hotez says as Rosen claims he asked out of curiosity.
“I haven’t said anything one way or the other,” the scientist replies.
Rosen continues questioning Hotez, who addresses Rogan’s invitation to appear on the show saying, “We’ll see.”
“We’ll give it some thought,” Hotez responds as Rosen encourages the scientist to take the comedian up on the offer to debate RFK Jr.
— Alex Rosen (@iFightForKids) June 18, 2023
“What do you have to say to people who are vaccine injured?” Rosen continues as Hotez walks through a side gate. “Anything for them?”
“Don’t come to my house,” Hotez responds while locking the gate.
“Do you think vaccine injuries are real, Peter?” Rosen asks as Hotez enters his house. “It’s just a question. Settle the science now!”
Shortly after Rosen’s confrontation, the scientist tweeter referring to Rosen as a “stalker” and “antivaxer.”
“I just was stalked in front of my home by a couple of antivaxers taunting me to debate RFK Jr.,” Hotez wrote. “What is it with people?”
Ugh I just was stalked in front of my home by a couple of antivaxers taunting me to debate RFKJr. Of course I was looking my Sunday best in our brutal heat wave. What is it with people? Well at least Houstonian’s now know I support the team…#GoTexans pic.twitter.com/d0NIgNElKN
— Prof Peter Hotez MD PhD (@PeterHotez) June 18, 2023
Rosen revealed in a tweet the scientist had blocked him on Twitter.
Viewers criticized Rosen for confronting Hotez outside his house.
“This isn’t helping,” wrote Timcast owner and CEO Tim Pool.
Author Ashley St. Claire agreed Hotez was skirting Rogan’s offer to debate RFK Jr., though criticized Rosen’s tactics.
“I’m all for debate and think this guy is being a wuss, but showing up to someone’s house for some confrontation clicks is really lame,” she said.
Researcher and political commentator Malcolm Flex said Rosen’s confrontation was “lame.”
“Hunt pedos all you want because they hurt people but its his prerogative to not debate,” he said. “We don’t need to establish ‘Going to people’s houses’ as a baseline tactic. Not unless you REALLY want to open pandora’s box.”
Rosen responded to criticism shortly after.
“To all the crybabies crying — Peter Hotez will be ok you little simps,” Rosen wrote. “Never seen a reporter ask people questions (yes, even at their own home) before?”
To all the crybabies crying — Peter Hotez will be ok you little simps, lmao. Never seen a reporter ask people questions (yes, even at their own home) before?
Y’all calm down and hit the copium, ok?
— Alex Rosen (@iFightForKids) June 18, 2023
“Y’all calm down and hit the copium,” he said.
Hotez, who has previously appeared on The Joe Rogan Experience, initially commented on Rogan’s Thursday episode of the podcast with RFK Jr. in which the comedian and Democratic presidential candidate discussed the COVID-19 pandemic and subsequent push for vaccines.
“From all the online attacks I’m receiving after this absurd podcast, it’s clear many actually believe this nonsense,” the scientist said of the episode in a Saturday post. Along with the tweet, Hotez shared a Vice article discussing RFK Jr.’s episode with Rogan titled, “Spotify Has Stopped Even Sort of Trying to Stem Joe Rogan’s Vaccine Misinformation.”
Spotify Has Stopped Even Sort of Trying to Stem Joe Rogan’s Vaccine Misinformation. It’s really true @annamerlan just awful. And from all the online attacks I’m receiving after this absurd podcast, it’s clear many actually believe this nonsense https://t.co/GwIFsOODC2
— Prof Peter Hotez MD PhD (@PeterHotez) June 17, 2023
Rogan and Hotez engaged in a back-and-forth Twitter conversation as the comedian offered the scientist $100k to the charity of his choice to debate the Democratic presidential candidate on his show.
The scientist appeared to turn down Rogan’s offer in a now-deleted tweet suggesting the comedian, along with streaming platform Spotify which exclusively hosts Rogan’s show, could afford upwards of $50 million.
Pool, along with Andrew Tate and other influencers, have pledged money to Rogan’s initial $100k offer for Hotez to debate RFK Jr. on the comedian’s podcast. The current debate pot from influencers is over $1.5 million.