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Shaq, El American

Shaquille O’Neal Speaks Up Against Vaccine Mandates: ‘You Should Not Be Forced’

The NBA star defended medical freedom on the most recent episode of his show “The Big Podcast with Shaq”

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Former basketball player and NBA superstar Shaquille O’Neal voiced his pushback against COVID vaccine mandates on Thursday in a debate with Nischelle Turner on his show The Big Podcast with Shaq, saying he doesn’t believe people should be “forced” to get vaccinated if they don’t want to.

Shaq and Turner’s partner on the podcast, Spice Adams, mentioned a news event involving two nurses in New York who made about $1.5 million by forging vaccine cards.

At the point when Adams mentions that law enforcement had seized more than $900K in cash from the home of one of the nurses, Shaq rudely interrupted by saying, “don’t send them to jail.”

Shaq speaks up against mandates and offers alternatives

Adams and Turner immediately ask Shaq why, to which he replies, “Okay, I might get in trouble for this,” and proceeds to explain his stance against vaccination mandates.

“Let’s just say Nischelle that you were a sound guy at ET (Entertainment Tonight),” Shaq said, exemplifying his position. “You’ve been working there 10 years, that’s all you know. You come to work everyday, then you go home and you got your beliefs. Let’s just say ET puts out a new policy: you don’t get the vaccination, you lose your job. -Let me finish before you interrupt-. The sound guy that has been working there for 15 years now has a decision to make: I don’t want to go against my morals, I can’t. I don’t want to do it. Blah blah blah. So this is where the scam lady comes in, like: I’ll give these people what they want, so I can keep my job and keep my livelihood.”

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Immediately, before they could respond to him, Shaq adds, “Look, I encourage everybody to be safe and take care of their family, I do. But there’s still some people who don’t want to take [the vaccine]. And you should not be forced to take something that you don’t want.”

When Turner tried to defend the mandates by saying they were not forcing anyone to get vaccinated, Shaq insisted, “It is forced because if the man doesn’t take it, the man will get fired.”

Turner continued to defend the mandates as an internal policy for private companies, arguing that the companies’ rules are their sole decision and employees must abide by them.



“I’m with you on the rules, because I’m a rules guy,” Shaq responded to Turner. “But I do feel simpathetic towards people who has to make that decision.”

When Turner said that COVID transmission is a public health issue because it puts others at risk, Shaq suggested that other measures such as pre-emptive isolation or “stay home” are more effective and less intrusive than a vaccination mandate.

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