The Rock Should Not Throw Stones

Before celebrities like The Rock or anyone else feeds others to the woke mob, perhaps they need to look at their own past first.

It seems every day there are new developments in the fight over Joe Rogan. The world’s top podcaster has been targeted by the establishment media and woke mob to be deplatformed by the music streaming company Spotify, which has an exclusive deal with Rogan. Ostensibly, the reason that Rogan has been targeted for cancellation is because he allowed experts who do not follow the mainstream narrative regarding the COVID-19 vaccines on his podcast. These are not fringe conspiracy theorists off the street but highly credentialed medical experts whose opinions just happen to differ from Anthony Fauci’s.  

But many believe the cries of “COVID misinformation” are simply the ruse to cancel Rogan and not the true reason. The real reason, some claim, is that Rogan gives a platform to many differing viewpoints on his extremely popular podcast—many of which are not politically correct or sanctioned by the elite.

People are divided on the Joe Rogan situation and whether or not Spotify should deplatform him. Aging musicians Neil Young and Joni Mitchell are leading the charge to cancel him, but many stepped up to defend Rogan, including Hollywood heavyweight and former pro-wrestler Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson.

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As Breitbart reported, following a video by Rogan where he tried to appease the cancel mob, The Rock showed his support for Rogan tweeting, “Great stuff here brother. Perfectly articulated. Looking forward to coming on one day and breaking out the tequila with you.”

Of course, having a superstar like The Rock come out in support of Rogan’s exercise of free speech could not be tolerated by the woke mob and media elites, and efforts immediately began to turn the former professional wrestler against Rogan. A tweet from bestselling crime novelist and leftist political activist Don Winslow hit the sweet spot. Winslow pointed out that Rogan has “used and laughed about using the N word” on his show “dozens of times.” “Have you actually listened to [Rogan’s] many racist statements against black people?” the author asked The Rock.

That did the trick. The Rock responded that he was “not aware of [Rogan’s] use of the N word” prior to his comments in support of the podcaster, “but now I’ve become educated to his complete narrative. Learning moment for me.”

That doesn’t sound too bad. In fact, it sounds like a completely reasonable response. However, Don Winslow offered no evidence to support his claim of Rogan’s “many racist statements against black people,” and a video compilation of Rogan saying the n-word on his podcast several times over a twelve-year period lacks any context whatsoever. Words without context are a problem, as Don Winslow should know because, as the New York Post has reported, several of his books also contain the n-word.  However, it would be very unfair to claim that Don Winslow has written “many racist statements against black people,” just on the basis that his fictional books contain the racial slur. Thus, a better response by The Rock would have been to tweet, “Thanks for the info, Don. I’ll look into your accusations.”

But he didn’t respond that way. Instead, he chose to distance himself from his friend without any investigation of his own into the accusations against him. And this gets to the real problem with cancel culture. The secular religion of the woke does not offer understanding or forgiveness. They don’t care about context, they only care about punishment. And The Rock might want to worry less about Joe Rogan’s past gaffs and more about his own. Twitter, that noble guardian of the sacred commandments of wokeness, was quick to point out The Rock’s hypocrisy by reposting The Rock’s own (by woke standards) racist, transphobic, and fat-shaming videos and tweets.

In the same Breitbart article, there is a video of The Rock calling someone (believed to be fellow wrestler John Cena), “a bloated transvestite Wonder Woman.” In another video, he pretends to speak Chinese in a mocking way. In a tweet he uses another transphobic slur against a woman, tweeting, “Shhh…don’t be angry Ms. Katie. It’s not your fault you’re turning tranny tricks to put yourself through nursing school.” Pretty offensive stuff. Especially since, from what I can tell, that last vulgar tweet was not directed at a fellow wrestler or actor or anyone famous, but to a regular woman sans blue check mark with just 615 followers on Twitter.

But there is a reason that the Lord tells us to “let he who is without sin cast the first stone.” We are all sinners. I am certainly not sinless enough to throw stones at Joe Rogan or The Rock or anyone else. My past is filled with much more horrific sins than those that inflame the woke mob to figuratively stone the nonconformists like Rogan.

The humility that comes when one focuses on his own evil instead of the evil of others is what the Lord desires from all of His creatures. It is why the repentant Publican went home justified and the self-righteous Pharisee did not. Repentance here is key. We all fall. The question is, once we are down on the ground, do we grovel before God and beg His forgiveness so that He will lift us back up and clean us off? Or do we wallow in the mud, proud of the muck we are living in and pretending it is crystal spring water?

Of course, my own sinfulness does not mean I can never say anything to my brothers and sisters wallowing in the filth of their own sin. The Lord wants me and all of us to preach repentance and that requires pointing out sin. But first, I must be open and honest about my own unworthiness. I must acknowledge, like St. Paul, that I am the worst of all sinners. I must remove the log sticking out of my own eye, as Christ tells us, so that I may see the speck of dust in my brother’s eye. For the Lord wants me to help my brother remove the dirt from his eyes, but He knows that I cannot do so until the log is removed from my own eye. Once I have recognized my faults, admitted them, and corrected them, I will be able to help others.

But the teachings of wokeness are a far cry from the teachings of Christ. Christ loves and will forgive anyone who truly seeks His forgiveness. The woke hate, and they never forgive. Like their father the devil, they seek only to accuse and destroy. We, as Christians, cannot be that way. We cannot fight the devil with his own weapons. We must use the weapons Christ has given us—love and forgiveness. Thus, we should always give the benefit of the doubt and never be too quick to denounce others without a fair hearing.            

For example, I don’t know the context of any of those videos or tweets credited to The Rock. For all I know, and in fact what I highly suspect, is that “Ms. Katie” was not offended at all by The Rock’s tweet, was joking around with The Rock, and was delighted to have a wrestler she loved make a joke about her—even a vulgar one like that. But what I do know for sure is that Dwayne Johnson was playing a character known as The Rock. The Rock is a WWE persona. It’s not who Dwayne Johnson really is. So, when one puts those seemingly damaging videos and tweet in that context, there is really little for anyone to be angry or offended over.    

The same courtesy should be afforded to Joe Rogan. He has said that his use of the n-word was taken out of context, and I have no reason to doubt him. I have seen no other evidence that he is a racist. But even if there is, Rogan has apologized, and he seems genuinely sincere. Christ teaches that Rogan should be forgiven his sins, and any Catholic or other Christian that may have been offended should forgive him.

But the woke mob will not forgive. To that secular cult of hate, repentance is not a virtue worthy of forgiveness, but rather an admission of guilt worthy of destruction. And that is why the woke are constantly eating their own—because no one is without sin. Eventually, if we do not reverse course and return our country to the principles established by Christ and His Church, the mob will come for everyone—not just Joe Rogan but The Rock, Don Winslow, and even the nobodies like me.  

[Photo Credit: Shutterstock]


  • R. C. VanLandingham

    R.C. VanLandingham is a novelist. His most recent work is Peter Puckett and the Amulet of Eternity. Find out more

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