PBS broadcast the premier of a documentary about Dr. Anthony Fauci on March 21st. Dr. Fauci and District of Columbia Mayor Muriel Bowser are seen going door-to-door in a Washington, D.C. black neighborhood in 2021 trying to sell people on the virtues of getting a vaccine for COVID-19. They were met with skepticism and questions about the vaccine’s safety and effectiveness. Dr. Fauci, who is now retired from government service, was the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases at the time the documentary was filmed and was the point man for the federal government’s medical response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases is part of the National Institute of Health (“NIH”).
In his usual arrogant manner, Dr. Fauci, who has claimed that “I represent science,” dismissed the concerns of people he encountered during his door-to-door tour of the black neighborhood.
For example, one man said that “the people in America are not settled with the information that’s been given. So, I’m not going to be lining up taking a shot on a vaccination for something that wasn’t clear in the first place.”
Dr. Fauci dismissed this man’s concern regarding the very short time in which the vaccines were developed. He and Mayor Bowser gave up trying to answer this man’s legitimate concerns and walked away.
A woman whom Dr. Fauci and Mayor Bowser encountered during their door-to-door walking tour said that “I heard that [the vaccine] doesn’t cure it, and it doesn’t stop you from getting it.” Dr. Fauci denied the woman’s claim. “On the very, very, very rare chance that you do get it even if you’re vaccinated,” Dr. Fauci replied, “it’s a very – you don’t even feel sick. It’s like you don’t even know you got infected. It’s very, very good at protecting you.”
The woman turned out to be correct and Dr. Fauci turned out to be wrong. People who have been fully vaccinated and boosted have been infected by one variant or another of the coronavirus and have gotten very sick.
That is far from the only time that Dr. Fauci has been wrong, ranging from his claims that the virus is highly unlikely to be transmitted from vaccinated people to calling for nationwide school closures which he later denied having anything to do with.
Dr. Fauci has relished the spotlight since emerging into public prominence at the outset of the pandemic. He is a publicity hound, making numerous TV appearances, including on late night comedy shows. Dr. Fauci no doubt hopes that the PBS documentary, for which cameramen followed him around for 23 months starting on January 1, 2021, will burnish his reputation for posterity. It is highly questionable whether Dr. Fauci’s PR campaign will work, however.
Instead of trying to remain above the fray and being humble in the face of evolving knowledge about the novel virus causing COVID-19, Dr. Fauci has done the opposite. Dr. Fauci, for example, continues to downplay the mounting evidence that the origin of the coronavirus was probably a leak from a virology lab in Wuhan China. His history in dealing with the lab leak theory, now accepted by the FBI and the Department of Energy as the most likely explanation for the virus’s origin, is scandalous.
Early on after COVID-19 began spreading in the United States, Dr. Fauci adamantly swatted down the lab leak theory in favor of an explanation of the virus’s origin based on natural causes. He used a 2020 scientific paper debunking the lab leak theory to support his dogmatic insistence that the virus originated in nature without disclosing that he had commissioned and edited the paper in the first place.
Dr. Fauci said at the time, “There was a study recently where a group of highly-qualified evolutionary virologists looked at the sequence… in bats as they evolve and the mutations that it took to get to the point where it is now is totally consistent with a jump of species from an animal to a human.”
This paper, along with pronouncements from leading scientists at the time expressing a consensus that ruled out the lab leak theory, were weaponized against proponents of the lab leak explanation for how the coronavirus originated. These proponents, including doctors who were not willing to accept the conventional wisdom at the time, were attacked as racists and conspiracy theorists and barred from posting their opinions on social media.
In the PBS documentary, Dr. Fauci smirked as he dismissed the lab leak hypothesis as “molecularly impossible.” He claimed that the viruses being experimented with at the Wuhan lab and the pathogen that caused the pandemic were fundamentally different. Using an absurd analogy, Dr. Fauci said, “They [the viruses] were so different, it’s kind of like you have a Chevrolet and you got a motorcycle and you say, ‘I want to make that Chevrolet into the motorcycle.’”
Dr. Fauci has sparred with Republican Senator Rand Paul of Kentucky for suggesting that taxpayer-funded research grants awarded to EcoHealth Alliance between 2014 and 2021 on Dr. Fauci’s watch involved gain-of-function research. In this kind of research, a pathogen is genetically altered to become more transmissible or lethal for the purpose of informing an appropriate response should such a virus spread and cause an epidemic.
Dr. Fauci testified to Congress in May 2021 that the National Institute of Health “has not ever and does not now fund gain-of-function research in the Wuhan Institute of Virology.” He may well have lied under oath.
As the saying goes, “Sunlight is the best disinfectant.” The declassification of information related to the origins of COVID-19, which President Biden has signed into law, will hopefully provide some answers as to whether NIH had any role in funding, directly or indirectly, gain-of-function research at the Wuhan lab with Dr. Fauci’s knowledge, much less his approval.
The truth may finally come out from NIH e-mails and other communications, including Dr. Fauci’s, regarding what Fauci and other senior NIH officials knew about the experiments at the Wuhan lab involving EcoHealth Alliance that NIH funded. Unless, that is, the Biden administration redacts major portions of the declassified information to protect Dr. Fauci, which is quite likely to happen.
Dr. Fauci must be subpoenaed, if he does not appear voluntarily, to testify at a hearing conducted by the House Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Pandemic. If he lies about his support and knowledge of what was really going on at the Wuhan virology lab, he should be charged with lying under oath. If Fauci refuses to testify, answer any questions, or produce all subpoenaed documents, he should be held in contempt.