Dr. Oz Prepares His Defense Against Public Criticisms, But The Hits Keep On Coming

Theodore Roosevelt once referred to the American presidency as a “bully pulpit,” telling the folks of his day that the office provided a forum to have his positions and opinions heard far and wide. But even as Chief Executive, Ol’ Rough Rider couldn’t muster the following that Dr. Oz enjoys. The controversial TV doctor enjoys a command over international media that places him among the ranks of the world’s biggest celebrities. Moreover, it seems as though he’s currently gearing up to turn his vast resources against some of his most outspoken critics, including men and women who — just like Oz — ostensibly subscribe to the ancient and sacred Hippocratic Oath.

As previously reported by Inquisitr, a group of 10 doctors from Columbia University recently co-signed an email asking the institution to relieve Dr. Oz from his faculty position. Decrying Oz as a “quack” and a “charlatan,” the communiqué ignited extensive coverage and discussion via mainstream media and social media alike. For his part, Dr. Oz himself is now reportedly planning to refute the allegations and critiques leveled against him by addressing matters in detail on his popular daytime television show.

According to the New York Times, Dr. Oz will respond “aggressively” to the allegations this Thursday in a segment at the beginning of the program. A spokesperson for Oz indicated that the celebrity doctor will question the credibility of those who wrote the initial correspondence, adding that he will scrutinize the business relationships that some of them have with a group that supports the use of genetically modified foods.

In the meantime, Dr. Oz continues to take it on the chin from critics, some of whom now have added ammunition in the form of his private correspondence. Vox reports that e-mails leaked as a result of last year’s hack on Sony Entertainment appear to indicate that Oz was actively pursuing a deal that would utilize the broad reach of his media presence to promote the sale of fitness equipment without any real consideration of health benefits (or lack thereof) associated with such devices.

“I have been carefully following the wearable device market and am pretty close to consummating a longer term relationship, but just saw the piece below quoting Kaz Hirai [the president and CEO of Sony] and realized that Sony is moving into the space as well,” Oz allegedly wrote in an e-mail that was first made public by WikiLeaks. “We should leverage the Sony-driven success of our TV show into other arenas where Sony thrives, like health hardware.”

If genuine, the correspondence seemingly bolsters the claims by Dr. Oz’s colleagues that he unabashedly promotes “treatments and cures in the interest of personal and financial gain.” Whether or not these mounting embarrassments ultimately damage Oz’s carefully sculpted and cultivated personal brand remains to be seen. But how he makes his next series of public moves — including the forthcoming televised rebuttal — will ultimately determine which direction Dr. Oz travels at a decisive juncture in his career.

[Photo by Roger Kisby/Getty Images]