“Get over yourself,” the 72-year-old said of anti-vaxxers. “We’re not concerned if you agree with it or not, we’re concerned about you making us sick, so get your god damn Covid shot and protect other people from getting your stuff.”
Asked by Kate Garraway whether mask wearing should once again become mandatory in the UK, Simmons responded that “it should” and that fans for the forthcoming Kiss Kruise would not be able to attend without being vaccinated.
Now in its 10th year, the Kiss Kruise event – which sees the band perform aboard the cruise ship’s pool deck – will take place in November this year.
“Look, before [they] go to school you have to have your children get the flu vaccine and the polio vaccine, and there’s no discussion,” he said.
“‘What about my rights?’ Well, you don’t have as many rights as you think. When you get up to a red light, you must stop. There’s no choice. It’s because it’s not about you, it’s about the other innocent people going by.”
He continued: “Get over yourselves. Even when you get in the car, you must put on your seatbelt. ‘Well, you’re taking away my rights and the government’s telling me what to do.’ That’s right, the government is telling you what to do. Shut up, be respectful of other people and get a vaccine… stop being selfish.”
Simmons was widely praised on social media for his speech, with one Twitter user writing: “Top man Gene Simmons! Get a jab…”
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“Gene Simmons telling it like it is this morning,” another tweet read.
“Honestly thought Gene Simmons would have dog s*** opinions regarding vaccines, fair play on him,” one commenter said.
Another echoed: “Seeing Gene Simmons trending and thinking ‘Oh, bloody Hell…’ but it turns out he’s neither dead nor being an awful person – and is in fact encouraging folks to get vaccinated. Excellent!”
“One for the best metaphors for Covid vaccination I’ve heard… from Gene Simmons of Kiss,” another commenter said of Simmons’s speech, while someone else added: “Gene Simmons red light analogy was spot on. It’s so simple!”