Sen. Rand Paul called the nation's top epidemiologist a 'petty tyrant' for issuing warnings on the coronavirus.
Dr. Anthony Fauci said on Sunday that people should continue to adhere to social distancing measures and wear masks to avoid the spread of the coronavirus even after they have been vaccinated. Congressional Republicans responded by accusing him of tyranny and authoritarianism.
The nation's top epidemiologist said during an appearance on MSNBC that even people who have been inoculated against the coronavirus need to be careful. Asked if it was now OK for Americans to eat and drink indoors in bars and restaurants, Fauci responded, "No, it's still not OK for the simple reason that the level of infection, the dynamics of infection in the community are still really disturbingly high."
"If you're not vaccinated, please get vaccinated as soon as vaccine becomes available to you," Fauci urged. "And if you are vaccinated, please remember that you still have to be careful and not get involved in crowded situations, particularly indoors where people are not wearing masks. And for the time being, until we show, definitively, that a person who's vaccinated does not get the subclinical infection and can spread to others, you should also continue to wear a mask for the time being."
Some GOP lawmakers called Fauci's expert advice outrageous — or tyrannical.
"Enough of this! Fauci is completely ignoring science and stoking fear. Enough of the lockdowns. Enough of telling the American people what they can and cannot do," tweeted Rep. Jerry Carl of Alabama on Monday. "It is perfectly safe for vaccinated Americans to resume normal life."
"Fauci: 'Get vaccinated.' Also Fauci: 'If you've been vaccinated, you still must follow all of our authoritarian lockdown rules,'" said South Carolina Rep. Nancy Mace. "We see what’s going on here..."
Rep. Ronny Jackson of Texas complained, "Dr. Fauci says we can't meet our friends in restaurants, but he's SILENT about the THOUSANDS of COVID positive illegals flooding into our country. It's all political theater at this point, and it's hard to take ANY of it seriously."
"Fauci continues to ignore 100 years of vaccine science. His only real theme is 'do what I say' even when it makes no sense," Paul tweeted. "If you've recovered or been vaccinated - go about your life. Eat, drink, work, open the schools. Enough with the petty tyrants!"
Vaccines, while highly effective, are not an ironclad guarantee that individuals will not get COVID-19. Scientists have not yet determined whether vaccinated people can transmit the coronavirus to others. And because the vaccines were designed to protect against the strand of COVID-19 that originally fueled the global pandemic, studies suggest they may be less effective against some of the newer variants that are spreading across the nation.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has recommended that vaccinated Americans resume some normal activities but still use caution around medium and large gatherings.
Paul and other GOP lawmakers have been attacking those urging COVID-19 safety measures from the beginning of the pandemic. After a surge in cases last May at meat processing plants, Paul cheered the unproven "silver lining" that infected workers now have "immunity" and "can be a strong part of our economic recovery."
Paul has refused to wear a mask, claiming to be immune to the virus after a bout with the COVID-19 last year.
On April 1, Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) introduced a bill she called the "Fire Fauci Act," proposing to eliminate his annual salary for being "Dr. Always Wrong." Rep. Thomas Massie (R-KY) has signed on a co-sponsor.
Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.