Dr. Anthony Fauci appeared on “Fox News Sunday” for the first time in several months to chat for 10 minutes with Chris Wallace.
The nation’s leading infectious disease doctor is encouraged by the downward trend of coronavirus hospitalizations and deaths across the country, and thus suggests vaccinated individuals could have a normal holiday season, so long as they’re with others who have received the shot.
But asked about those not yet vaccinated, he urged that they still continue to avoid gatherings and wear a mask. Fauci did not mention natural immunity, antibodies, or various successful therapeutics.
“I’m not comfortable with telling people what they should do under normal circumstances, but we are not in normal circumstances right now,” Fauci argued. “So, I think if we can get people to just think about the implications of not getting vaccinated when you’re in a position where you have a responsible job and you want to protect yourself because you’re needed at your job, whether you’re a police officer or a pilot or any other of those kinds of occupations.”
Asked about Texas Gov. Greg Abbott recently issuing an executive order banning business entities from mandating inoculations, Fauci said it is “really unfortunate” and claimed that mandating vaccinations is “very important.”
“We’re not living in a vacuum as individuals,” he said. “We’re living in a society, and society needs to be protected, and you do that by not only protecting yourself but by protecting the people around you by getting vaccinated.”
The current average of almost 80,000 new cases every day and around 1,500 deaths is down considerably from a month ago. Cases are down about 23 percent, with hospitalizations and deaths down nearly 20 percent.
“So, we’re going in the right direction,” Fauci claimed. “The degree to which we continue to come down in that slope will depend on how well we do about getting more people vaccinated. If we don’t do very well in that regard, there’s always the danger that there will be enough circulating virus that you can have a stalling of the diminishing of the number of cases…but we can do something about that. That’s the whole point that we keep emphasizing. The more people we get vaccinated, the less likelihood is there going to be another surge.
Finally, Wallace asked the doctor about becoming a polarizing figure over the last year-and-a-half, to which Fauci replied, “I have stood for always making science, data, and evidence be what we guide ourselves by. And I think people who feel differently, who have conspiracy theories, who deny reality that’s looking them straight in the eye, those are people that don’t particularly care for me. And that’s understandable, because what I do and I try very hard, is to be guided by the truth. And sometimes, the truth becomes inconvenient for some people, so they react against me.”
Easy to convince yourself that all your critics are crazy bad guys, but the reality is that Fauci has been among the worst public health messengers throughout the pandemic and it has done enormous harm. Plenty of smart pro-vaccine people recognize that. https://t.co/mnxWKE8kkK
— AG (@AGHamilton29) October 17, 2021
Meanwhile pushback against vaccine mandates continues, with a rally in front of the New York Times building Saturday in Manhattan, along with a surprising recent report that nearly 40 percent of California state workers have yet to receive the shot. That figure among government workers is lower than the Golden State’s general population.
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