Is Fauci right his COVID email ‘misconstrued’?


Fact Box

  • Dr. Anthony Fauci is the leading immunologist for the White House, and has served as the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases since 1984. 
  • Through the Freedom of Information Act, Dr. Fauci’s email communication with US and international officials were unveiled Wednesday, June 2, 2021. Issues like mask-wearing, hydroxychloroquine, Chinese communication, and COVID origin were topics in question. 
  • After the email release, Republicans criticized Dr. Fauci over his “alleged” lack of response to the pandemic in its early days, and many called for his removal. Democrats and liberals, on the other hand, say Dr. Fauci’s comments reflected the scientific evidence at the time. 
  • On Thursday, June 3, 2021, Dr. Fauci said in an interview with CNN that the email about the COVID origin with EcoHealth Alliance was “misconstrued” and further stated, “I have always said, and will say today to you that I still believe the most likely origin is from an animal species to a human, but I keep an absolutely open mind that if there may be other origins of that, there may be another reason, it could have been a lab leak.”
  • As of Thursday, June 3, 2021, there have been 34 million coronavirus cases in the United States with 611,067 reported deaths.

Ethan (Yes)

Dr. Fauci is a medical professional, so it doesn't make sense he would have downplayed the mask situation in the first place. He knew the importance and had fought for the masks during the height of the pandemic and certainly wouldn't feed into conspiracy theories about a lab-released virus. Dr. Fauci said, in an interview with CNN, that he keeps 'an absolutely open mind' regarding the possibility of other origins. However, he makes it clear that he believes the most likely origin was natural. 

An executive at EcoHealth Alliance thanked Dr. Fauci for acknowledging the virus originated naturally and was not man-made. The email specifically thanks Fauci for publicly standing up and stating that the scientific evidence supports a natural origin for COVID-19 from a bat-to-human spillover, not a lab release from the Wuhan Institute of Virology. Unfortunately, many of Fauci's critics seem to have taken this gratitude in the name of science as thanking Fauci for 'covering up' the suspected lab origins of the virus. Clearly, that's not what the email states, meaning his email was misconstrued when the media was accusing him of claiming the virus was lab-made.

There are many people out to get Dr. Fauci, in a sense, especially people who don't like that he told the truth about the virus. It's important to remember that at the time the email from EcoHealth Alliance was sent (in April of 2020), we didn't know very much about the virus. Misconstruing an email he sent is just a tactic to make him look bad, but actual email evidence proves what he really said and what really happened.

Bill (No)

Fauci's COVID emails were not misconstrued—they are not ambiguous or filled with medical or scientific jargon; however, they reveal that his private email communications and public statements were often at odds with each other. An astonishing finding in the released emails is Fauci's dismissal of the efficacy of masks to combat COVID: 'The typical mask you buy in the drug store is not really effective in keeping out [the] virus, which is small enough to pass through the material.' The reason Fauci's mask quote is significant is because masks were at the center of the federal government's COVID guidelines. Individual states mandated executive orders enforcing their use and compelling businesses to require customers to adhere to this draconian, de-humanizing, and ultimately useless measure.  

As the 'director of the U.S. National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) and the chief medical advisor to the president,' Fauci knew his public statements carried extreme weight, and yet he still chose to mislead the public. This is especially troubling because the damage done from prolonged mask-wearing is significant. Specifically, it 'impairs the cardiopulmonary capacity, increases fatigue, and causes psychological discomfort.' The federal and state government response to COVID was marked by sweeping executive power grabs and contradicting yet overbearing restrictions on Constitutional and individual freedoms. Most disturbing was how swiftly and easily Americans surrendered their rights.

Fauci's legacy will be that his erroneous guidance caused harm—the lockdowns led to a litany of poor health outcomes—notably weight gain, an increase in alcohol consumption, depression, increased stress, lack of sleep, etc. Fauci is clearly attempting to disown responsibility for his part in all this.

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