Published on 1 Oct 2014 Sections ,

‘Boring waffle’: students rate Cameron’s speech

They wanted cuts to tuition fees and votes for over 16s: they got a speech “for the older generation”, say Birmingham students, which was “hypocritical”, “out of touch” – and too patriotic.

Video above features Anita Alliu, Josh Pritchard, Lashay Malcolm, Hassan Mahmudul, Ravneet Jandu, Sarah Kelly, Lamis Kola and Wesley King.

With the Scottish referendum, a renewed focus on engaging youth in politics hit the limelight – so Channel 4 News sat down with eight students to discuss their views on the prime minister’s speech.

So what did they think?

Opening comments


What Cameron said: "I am so proud to stand here today as Prime Minister of four nations in one United Kingdom..." 

What the students thought:

Above: Wesley King gives his view on David Cameron’s speech opening

This is boring waffle. Wesley King, 17, when Cameron talks about D Day anniversary

He’s trying to make out like he’s normal. Like he does normal things. Lashay Malcolm, 17

Cuts to benefits – thumbs up

What Cameron said: "We will reduce the benefits cap, and we will say to those 21 and under: no longer will you have the option of leaving school and going straight into a life on benefits. You must earn or learn."

What the students said:

Benefits


Jobs – thumbs up


What Cameron said: "800,000 fewer people on the main out-of-work benefits. In the next five years we're going to go further. You heard it this week – we won't just aim to lower youth unemployment; we aim to abolish it."

What the students said:

House-building – thumbs down


What Cameron said: "Young people watched Location, Location, Location not as a reality show – but as fantasy."

What the students said:

No-one I know watches that. Who cares? Josh Pritchard, 17

National Citizenship Service – ambivalent


What Cameron said: "The next Conservative Government will guarantee a place on National Citizen Service for every teenager in our country."

What the students said:

You can already get on it if you want to. Don’t know why he’s made such a big deal about it. Lashay Malcolm, 17

The NHS – mixed


What Cameron said: "The next Conservative Government will protect the NHS budget and continue to invest more."

What the students said:

Why is he talking about using a hospital? He can use a private one anyway. Lamis Kola, 16

However, all the students liked the prime minister saying that a “Good NHS needs a strong economy”.

Theresa May – thumbs down


What Cameron said: "Let's hear it for the woman who made it happen: our crime-busting Home Secretary, Theresa May."

What the students said:

Following lots of “boos”…

She too old, doesn’t engage with young people.

I instantly turn off when she starts talking.

She doesn’t have the people’s touch. Wesley King, 17