Joe Rogan's Remarks About Violence Against Homeless People Leave Advocates 'Shocked': 'It's Repulsive'

Rogan is being criticized for "disgusting" comments he made on his podcast last week regarding violence against people experiencing homelessness in Los Angeles

Joe Rogan
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Joe Rogan is being criticized for "disgusting" comments he made last week regarding violence against people experiencing homelessness in Los Angeles.

In a July 14 episode of The Joe Rogan Experience, the controversial podcast host, 54, discussed the topic with guest Tom Segura.

The comments were made shortly after Segura remarked on how the belongings of homeless people are "protected property" in Los Angeles — referring to a decision that protects against property seizures by the government "even when that property is stored in public areas," according to The Los Angeles Times.

"Oh, a homeless person's property is protected?" Rogan replied.

Rogan went on to seemingly compare the situation with the city's response to violent crime, claiming that while the government would take action if anybody tried to remove a homeless person's property, they "wouldn't arrest you if you shot somebody."

"Maybe you should just go shoot the homeless people," Rogan said, with Segura responding, "I like your ideas."

Speaking out, advocate Theo Henderson told Variety that Rogan's comments could lead to violence.

"It's repulsive," Henderson told the publication. "It's infuriating because it's not only out of touch, but the reality is that unhoused people are targeted by housed people. To advocate trying to shoot at unhoused people or just giving these dog whistles to people that do not see unhoused people as human beings — I can't believe you'd advocate for it."

Andy Bales, president and CEO of L.A.'s Union Rescue Mission, also reacted to Rogan's remarks.

"I'm surprised and saddened," Bales told Variety. "The comments about beginning to kill homeless people hits too close to reality for any comfort, because murders of homeless people in Los Angeles went up 47% last year over the previous year…. There is a bit of an unfortunate vigilantism already in Los Angeles towards people devastated by homelessness and they don't need any encouragement."

Representatives for Spotify and Rogan did not immediately respond to PEOPLE's request for comment.

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It's not the first time the Fear Factor alum's podcast has come under fire.

After making controversial comments regarding COVID-19 and mRNA vaccines last year, artists whose music is featured on the platform — including Neil Young and Joni Mitchell — asked to be removed from the streaming service.

In response, Spotify decided to include disclaimers on podcast episodes discussing COVID-19. Rogan issued an apology video on social media earlier this year, promising to make more of an effort to "balance out" the opinions on his show.

Days later, however, Rogan faced another separate controversy when singer India Arie shared clips of Rogan repeatedly using a racial slur throughout many past episodes of his podcast. The resurfaced clips prompted Rogan to apologize again. Arie also requested to have her music taken off Spotify.

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