James O'Brien caller's powerful escape from Covid conspiracy rabbit hole

20 October 2021, 14:25 | Updated: 20 October 2021, 14:29

By Tim Dodd

This was "one of the most important calls" James O'Brien has ever taken, as he heard from a listener who said he'd been able to climb out of a Covid conspiracy and far-right rabbit hole because of his show.

Mike in Northampton told James: "One of the reasons why I'm in a place I am to talk to you today is because of your show.

"I'm 89% out of the rabbit hole, as one may say... It's so hard to get out of this rabbit hole that I know I've been in for at least the last two years."

Mike explained that he "never followed politics" but then when President Trump got elected he started following him, becoming "very far right"

Read more: Business Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng: Another Covid lockdown is “not going to happen”

Giving examples of the views he held, he said he thought that Black Lives Matter was not a good movement.

Mike described the rabbit hole: "You start peeking down it, and then you start talking to people and then they're sending you, I would say very broken clips... At the time it didn't feel like it was broken clips, because you have tunnel vision."

Read more: Sajid Javid warns of 'tough winter' as No10 'closely' monitors new covid variant

Mike continued: "It got to a point where I was deeply, deeply down the rabbit hole of, I [wasn't] taking my vaccine." 

James acknowledged he could fall for such "seductive" conspiracies that were like an "intoxicating brew", for example Covid vaccination being introduced to limit the world population as it would lead to deaths.

"What I was watching has become a cult. I will happily, honestly say I felt like I was in a cult."

Read more: Face masks and lockdowns as 'last resort': Health Sec unveils 'winter plan' options

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