CNN host Don Lemon had quite a bit to say about unvaccinated people taking up precious space in hospitals on Tuesday night.
The impassioned, impromptu lecture began when fellow CNN host Chris Cuomo, brother of disgraced former New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, apologized for going over his permitted time before the handoff to Lemon. Cuomo had run over his time interviewing a man whose wife had tragically died of breast cancer after she was discharged from a hospital allegedly because it was too overloaded with COVID-19 patients in the ICU.
The Delta variant, in particular, has helped overwhelm hospital ICU beds with unvaccinated COVID-19 patients.
Lemon, however, didn’t appear to be upset at Cuomo taking up some of his allotted air time, and interrupted Cuomo’s apology.
“Sorry I ate into the time there,” began Cuomo, “But I had a–”
“No,” interrupted Lemon, “It was very important. You don’t have to explain.”
From there, Lemon launched into his speech on those who refuse to take COVID-19 precautions.
“If you’re not gonna get vaccinated, you don’t want to social distance, you don’t wanna to wear a mask, then maybe you don’t wanna go to the hospital when you get sick. I know that sounds harsh but you’re taking up the space for people who are doing things the right way,” Lemon said.
“You and I both agree on, this is going to be between the vaccinated and unvaccinated moving forward in this country. And I just think if you don’t want to play by any of those rules and all of a sudden, you end up in the hospital, I feel bad… but maybe you shouldn’t go and take the resources from someone else. That’s it.”
Lemon was only starting, however, and after noting the great burden on “exhausted” healthcare workers that COVID-19 patients, vaccinated and unvaccinated alike, and how little time they have to “spend with their own families,” he continued.
“It is putting a stress and strain on the system and people all over this country because some people who are so selfish are saying, ‘It’s my freedom and I don’t wanna get vaccinated. I don’t wanna do that!’ Ok, fine! But think about someone other than yourself,” he continued. “And if you don’t believe that COVID is real and that it can’t affect your health and possibly take your life, don’t go to the hospital then when you get sick! Don’t take up the resources from other people who are playing by the rules, getting vaccinated, social distancing and putting their lives on the line to try take care of the people who are there. That’s all I’m saying. That’s how I feel. And I have no apologies.”
Reactions were, as usual, emotional and mixed:
Medical insurance should not pick up a dime for the hospital say of an unvaxxed person.
— Dancer (@Dancer15920351) September 1, 2021
So it’s okay to deny medical service now? Lol
— Ubong E. (@EkpoNeptune) September 1, 2021
While many believe that vaccines remain the best way to prevent COVID-19 infections, the debate is sure to remain partisan and impassioned on both sides.
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