She may be the most powerful crank enabler on the planet.
After Oprah delivered her epic Golden Globes speech on Sunday, #Oprah2020 was suddenly a thing.
Everyone from Ivanka Trump to Ron Howard praised her inspiring oratory, and celebrities like Lady Gaga said they’d vote for her if she were to run for president. Even hard-nosed political observers, including Nate Cohn and Nate Silver, pointed out she would be a real contender.
Oprah has reportedly denied any interest in the White House, but that hasn’t stopped people from wondering what an Oprah presidency could look like — and what scrutiny she’d face if she really harbors political ambitions.
Since people are clamoring for her to run as a solution to our country’s problems, we wanted to highlight one area in which the broadcaster, billionaire, and philanthropist has a pretty dubious record: science.
During her 25-year reign as host of The Oprah Winfrey Show, from 1986 to 2011, Oprah repeatedly showed a weakness for crackpots and quack medical theories. One could even argue that she’s one of the most powerful enabler of cranks on the planet. Here’s a quick rundown of some of her worst assaults on reason and scientific thinking.
Oprah made Dr. Oz a celebrity
In 2004, Dr. Oz made his first appearance on The Oprah Winfrey Show, where he was referred to as “America’s Doctor” (a moniker he trademarked). As a regular medical expert on Oprah, he used the platform to back a range of questionable health practices, including lending credibility to the Brazilian spirit medium and well-known huckster ”John of God.”
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