Vaccine Refuser Tried To Take Renowned Professor To Task Over Vaccines On Question Time. He Failed.

The exchange included a withering glance at the camera, a discreet sip of water and a philosophy degree.
A man who has refused the vaccine speaking to an immunologist on BBC Question Time on Thursday
A man who has refused the vaccine speaking to an immunologist on BBC Question Time on Thursday
BBC Question Time

An unvaccinated member of BBC Question Time’s audience tried to explain why he was not convinced that everyone should get the Covid jab in a rather awkward exchange on Thursday.

During a special episode where unvaccinated people had been encouraged to attend the show, Dr Robin Shattock, professor of immunity at Imperial College London, had to unpack the rationale behind vaccinations to one sceptic with a philosophy degree.

The audience member began by claiming the Covid vaccine has “some fairly horrific side-effects” and that “we’re operating with incomplete data”.

He also alleged the side-effects for young, healthy people does not outweigh the benefits of the Covid vaccine.

However, Professor Shattock pointed out that there there are a range of vaccines out there and we have more safety data in the current vaccines because it has been given to billions of people around the world.

“If we talk about serious adverse events, they are extremely rare,” he added.

The vaccine sceptic then claimed he knew what data Shattock was looking at.

He said: “I’ve looked at the data myself. The data I believe you’re talking about is the yellow card reporting scheme.”

This programme is for reporting adverse drug reactions in the UK. But Dr Shattock pointed out that, actually, he was looking at worldwide data.

The audience member replied: “Oh OK fine – most of the data in the UK comes from a yellow card reporting scheme.”

He referred back to a select committee hearing back in 1999 which estimated not everyone was reporting the negative side-effects on the yellow card reporting scheme.

Question Time host Fiona Bruce then interjected: “What’s interesting here listening to you is you’ve got Robin, who is a world-renowned expert, developing vaccines, researching vaccines for HIV and ebola, he’s given you information he’s given you.

“You’re going through your notes finding all sorts of other things.

“Is nothing he says credible to you, given what an eminent scientist he is?”

The audience member replied: “No, sure sure sure, of course it is – I studied philosophy at university and I learnt an appeal to authority is not an automatic win of an argument.”

He name-dropped Dr Robert Malone, a US specialist in mRNA technology who has been promoting misinformation about the Covid vaccines throughout the pandemic, and claimed he was the one behind the mRNA vaccine development.

He was immediately debunked by Prof Shattock, who pointed out that BioNTech and Moderna developed RNA vaccines, not Dr Malone.

The Telegraph’s Tim Stanley also weighed into the debate later in the episode, pointing out: “To the gentleman with his degree in philosophy, which is a very good thing to have, by the way, of course it won’t protect you from a virus, whereas degrees in medicine are probably much more useful in that regard.”

Twitter lapped the whole exchange up – especially the discreet moment NHS Confederation’s Victor Adebowale appeared to hide his disbelief towards the unvaccinated person by taking a sip of water.

This particular Question Time special surprised the public when Bruce first called for anti-vaxxers to appear on the show, especially as it came just weeks after No.10 said the sceptics “thrive on attention”.


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