Howard Stern pushed for mandatory COVID-19 vaccinations Tuesday while railing against “nut jobs” who refuse to get jabbed, including several fellow radio personalities who recently died from the disease.
The longtime radio host made the remarks on “The Howard Stern Show” on SiriusXM in his first broadcast in more than two months while reflecting on the current situation of the novel coronavirus pandemic.
“I’m going to get a little preachy, which I know people don’t like, but I’ve been holding it in all summer,” Mr. Stern, 67, said near the start of his latest show.
Mr. Stern then proceeded to criticize “imbeciles” who have willingly refrained from getting vaccinated against COVID-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus, including those who later died from it.
“But it’s really funny when these radio — the radio guys are the best. There was like four of them died. Four of them who were like ranting on the air that they would not get vaccinated. They were on fire, these guys, it was like day after day they were all dying. And then their dying words are: ‘I wish I had been more into the vaccine; I wish I had taken it’,” Mr. Stern said.
“You know, I have trouble drumming up compassion,” chimed in co-host Robin Quivers, a former nurse and U.S. Air Force veteran. “And I think that’s a terrible thing. To not be able to drum up compassion for people that stupid that they wind up dying.”
Mr. Stern agreed he found it difficult to drum up compassion for vaccine critics who become sick with COVID-19, including namely several conservative radio hosts who died from the disease in recent weeks.
“When are we going to stop putting up with the idiots in this country and just say you now — it’s mandatory to get vaccinated,” he said.
“It’s time to get these people vaccinated whether they want it or not. Tell them they can’t do anything,” Mr. Stern reiterated later in the show.
Chris Wilding, a writer for the show, subsequently brought up Dick Farrel, a conservative radio host from West Palm Beach, Florida, among the several vocal vaccine skeptics to recently die from COVID-19.
“He said ‘power trip libb loons’ trying to make everyone believe the pandemic was still a threat just so they could seize more power. Well he’s dead, so,” Mr. Wilding said about Farrel, who died Aug. 4.
“Good,” Mr. Stern interjected. “That’s it. Goodbye. Goodbye!”
Vaccines have proven to be very effective in preventing severe illness and death from COVID-19, which has killed more than 600,000 people in the U.S. since the first cases of the virus appeared in early 2020.
Mr. Stern returned to air Tuesday after taking the entirety of July and August off from his SiriusXM show. The satellite radio company boasted close to 35 million paid subscribers as of earlier this year.
As of July 1, around 159 million Americans were fully vaccinated against COVID-19, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Around 16 million others have joined them since.