Today’s post is another long thumb-sucker, this time on the topic of whether people espousing some crazy views, like Candace Owens or Joe Rogan, really do have influence. We’re often told these days that they don’t. But they have very large audiences — and as I am at pains to show in this piece, that matters:
I think it’s easy to miss just how large an audience 11 million people really is. I think the following question really helps drive it home. What if I were to ask you how many Joe Rogan fans will likely commit suicide in the year 2022? Before moving on to the next paragraph, ask yourself: what would your gut tell you? Close your eyes and muse upon the subject before you read on any further. See if you can come up with an answer. Zero people? One or two? A handful? Don’t read the next sentence until you have your own answer.
What was your answer? Well, given that I am asking the question, you’re probably guessing higher than you otherwise would. Maybe you guessed a dozen? As many as twenty? Surely it can’t be that high!
P.S. I initially used the term “conservative crazies” in the title, but I have removed the word “conservative” because Rogan is not himself conservative, although the dark aspersions he casts on COVID vaccines are widely embraced by the movement that currently calls itself “conservative.” Truly, we need a new word for the crazy movement — or, possibly, we need a new word for those of us who have always been what we used to call conservative.