James O'Brien takes on caller who insists 'we should vaccinate young people first'

5 February 2021, 13:37

By Fiona Jones

This was James O'Brien's fiery debate with a caller who insisted that young people should be given the Covid jab first instead of "Edith and Mary in their eighties who just sit at home."

Caller James phoned LBC to tells James "we've got the whole vaccination programme the wrong way round."

He continued: "We've prioritised Edith and Mary in their 80s and 90s. They've had their education, they've had their career, they've had their life. Meanwhile I've got children whose mental health is suffering, their education is suffering, the economy is suffering, and we are prioritising the wrong people.

"The future of the country has been completely neglected in favour of Edith and Mary...priority wise, if the economy is sinking we need to get things moving."

James O'Brien understood the points he made, responding that the vaccination priority is dependent on who is most likely to die if they catch it.

"But James, Edith and Mary sit at home most of the time because they're retired," the caller said, "the cherry on the cake in my argument, I believe, is that Edith and Mary won't be around to pay for the bill. So they get the first class treatment."

James pointed out they had already paid for the bill with a "lifetime of taxation", to which the caller James agreed.

However he added: "When it comes to now recovering from this mess, we need to [vaccinate] key workers, teachers, children back in schools, so we can start generating income to start paying for these bills.

"Our children have been completely neglected and that's shameful.

"What's more important, my children who are declining after ten months of schooling? It's almost as if we've come to accept that this is normal and OK. It's shameful."

The caller continued that her mother in her 70s sits at home and goes to the supermarket three times a week "when she's bored" - to which James replied that "the country is full of people of a certain age who do want to be out and about."

James said this was the moment to agree to disagree, as James would rather his mum vaccinated first - and caller James would prefer it the other way round.

Watch the fiery exchange above.

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