A man managed to baffle millions of BBC viewers when he publicly called for ‘Leftists’ to be treated as having a mental disorder.
The Question Time audience member tackled Labour’s Richard Burgeon, accusing many “on the left” of being “very hypocritical” and suggesting they suffered psychological problems.
Clad in a red cap, grey jacket and fluorescent yellow shirt, the man from Boston said there was a “common theme” of hypocrisy among “Leftists”.
“They’ll espouse ‘you’ve got to be tolerant towards everyone and people’s views’ - but if they disagree towards your views, they’re very intolerant towards your views,” he said.
Panellist on the BBC show Rod Liddle could be heard off-camera voicing his support, agreeing those on the left were “incredibly intolerant, yes”.
But the cap-wearing Bostonian continued, saying: “I’m very interested in this - there’s a psychology behind it. I would determine under the diagnosis statical manual of mental disorder, I would include Socialist Dilusional Disorder.
To laughs from the audience and Tory minister Priti Patel, he insisted: “I would put it in the diagnosis list of mental disorder because the hypocrisy is unbelievable by a lot of people on the left side.”
Burgeon blasted back defiantly that “with respect, it does rather sound like a caricature of the Stalinist Soviet Union, where people with the wrong political beliefs were carted away and you were diagnosed with being politically or mentally subject.”
That response didn’t deter the aggressor, though, as he shot back to large cheers from the audience: “But you will, because you’re Labour aren’t you.”
Some social media users, including columnist Toby Young, were also taken with the idea.
But many others were unconvinced.
Watch the full exchange below:
Thursday’s Question Time came from Boston in Lincolnshire. Panelists joining Burgeon and Liddle on the BBC show included International Development Secretary Priti Patel, playwright Bonnie Greer and Ukip’s Steven Woolfe.