In the wake of his COVID diagnosis, ultra-famous Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers went on a live show with sports analyst and former punter Pat McAfee and calmly, emphatically delivered a series of conspiracy theories, half-truths and outright bullshit about COVID vaccinations.(Rodgers is unvaccinated.) Among other things, Rodgers said he’s taking ivermectin, a drug which has no proven use for treating COVID, on the advice of Joe Rogan.
“I found a long term immunization protocol to protect myself and I'm very proud of the research that went into that,” Rodgers also said, from home, while in quarantine, with COVID.
Rodgers previously claimed in a press conference he’d been “immunized” against COVID; after testing positive this week, NFL.com reported he’d received a homeopathic treatment, and had lobbied the NFL to be considered vaccinated based on that treatment. Rodgers declined on McAfee’s show to disclose exactly what the treatment involved, although it sounds an awful lot like bogus homeopathic “vaccines” called nosodes that have been making the rounds for a number of years. Homeopathy is not a real medical discipline and does not work to prevent COVID or anything else.
Rodgers told McAfee that his medical team presented the NFL with a “500 page report” on the supposed efficacy of the treatment or treatments he received. “They thought I was a quack,” he said. The protocol, he said, was developed in consultation with “amazing minds,” including “MDs, holistic doctors, different people” and was “a way to stimulate my immune system.” Vaccinations “stimulate” the immune system, and do so safely and effectively. Taking meaningless tinctures, sugar pills or raiding any other aisle at Whole Foods does not.
Rodgers claimed that he has an allergy to the mRNA vaccines, which, if true, would be an extremely rare medical condition, and decided not to get a Johnson and Johnson vaccine over concerns about blood clots, which are extremely rare and are believed to largely affect women of reproductive age.
“I have taken this very seriously,” he said. “I’m not a COVID denier or anything like that. I just wanted to make the decision that’s best for my body.”
Rodgers expressed concern that the “long term effects” of vaccines aren’t known, specifically around fertility, since he has a desire to become a father in the near future. There’s no proof COVID vaccines or any others cause infertility; a number of people, in fact, became pregnant during clinical trials for the vaccines, which suggest otherwise. Contracting COVID, on the other hand, may lead to infertility
Near the end of his time, Rodgers insisted that he was simply in favor of bodily autonomy, then veered almost immediately into suggesting that vaccines offer fewer benefits than “natural immunity,” another anti-vaccine talking point.
“Vaccines do offer some protection for sure but there’s a lot we don’t know about them, there’s a lot we don’t know about the waning antibody counts. There’s been conversations around boosters,” he said. What hasn’t been part of the conversation, he added, is natural immunity: “There’s 30 studies I can go through that talk about how important natural immunity is. If you’ve gotten covid and recovered that's the best boost to immunity you can have.” (The thing vaccine skeptics never seem quite clear on is that an Israeli study found that people who had covid and then got vaccinated have very strong protection against getting the disease again. Like vaccine-conferred immunity, we’re still not clear how long natural immunity lasts.)
Rodgers also said that he believed reporters were looking two months ago into his “immunization” comments, based on the way he phrased his response to the question. “I knew this was going to come, I was ready for it.”
That said, he insisted, “There was nothing deceptive about it… If there’d been follow-up questions I would have answered them.” His team, he said, “has known my status since day one.”