GERTH

Schooled by Anthony Fauci, Rand Paul shows he's a student of 'theater' and not medicine

Joseph Gerth
Louisville Courier Journal

The more I hear Rand Paul talk about the coronavirus, the more I’m convinced his medical degree is written in crayon.

And so it was Thursday when he went head to head with Dr. Anthony Fauci, the leading epidemiologist of our time, and made a complete fool out of himself, arguing that he ought not have to wear a mask because he had tested positive for the coronavirus 361 days earlier.

That somehow he was immune for life from the quickly mutating virus and all its variants, forever and ever. Amen.

Dean Mary E. Klotman, head of the Duke University School of Medicine, must cringe every time this distinguished alumnus opens his yap.

Paul, an accomplished practitioner of pseudoscience, argued with Fauci over the need to wear masks to fight the pandemic if you’ve either had the coronavirus or been vaccinated against it, claiming there’s not been a single case in the United States of someone dying or being hospitalized for COVID after they developed alleged immunity.

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Had he read The Courier Journal just a few days earlier, he would have known an outbreak of a new variant at a nursing home in Eastern Kentucky sent five residents to the hospital, including one who had received the vaccine.

But hey, never let facts get in the way of a good rant.

“You’re telling everybody to wear a mask, whether they’ve had an infection or a vaccine,” Paul told Fauci. “What I’m saying is: They have immunity, and everybody agrees they have immunity. What studies do you have that people that have had the vaccine or have had the infection are spreading the infection? If we’re not spreading the infection, isn’t it just theater? … You’ve had the vaccine, and you’re wearing two masks. Is that just theater?”

Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute for Allergy and Infectious Diseases, prepares to testify before a Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, June 30, 2020. (Kevin Dietsch/Pool via AP)

Hah.

He had the audacity to accuse Fauci of “theater” for wearing masks while Paul himself is the most accomplished crisis actor in the U.S. Senate, painting himself as a victim of everything from fluorescent and LED lightbulbs, to low-flush toilets to masks.

Poor Rand.

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The fact is scientists believe people who have had COVID develop some level of immunity for at least six months but beyond that, the science is unclear.

The fact is we have no idea how long the vaccines protect people from the disease, and if we rely on vaccines alone to protect us while the disease is still spreading, there’s a chance we’ll find ourselves in another spike that could lead to the deaths of hundreds of thousands of Americans.

But Paul is full of hooey and believes his freedom to go unmasked is more important than yours, mine or anyone else’s right to live.

You remember Paul don’t you.

After he had reason to believe he had the virus, he went to a Senate luncheon and sat next to then-73-year-old Sen. Mitt Romney, whose wife Ann has a weakened immune system because of multiple sclerosis.

He’s the same fella who then risked spreading the virus around the Senate complex by taking a dip in the Senate swimming pool and going to the Senate gym.

Sen. Sherrod Brown called out Sen. Rand Paul in front of colleagues.

He’s the same guy who has been called out on the Senate floor for refusing to wear a mask and he’s the guy who just doesn’t seem to care about anyone but himself.

But Fauci was wasting his breath.

Paul also doesn’t seem to care about science or facts.

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He’s a member of the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons, based in Tucson, Arizona, which advances theories that HIV doesn’t cause AIDS, that smoking cessation programs actually cause people to smoke, that Barack Obama hypnotized people to get elected, and that law enforcement is too tough on doctors who overprescribe pain killers.

Jane Orient, the executive director of this association, has been a leading opponent of masks and has even testified before the U.S. Senate against the coronavirus vaccines. She is a proponent of hydroxychloroquine, an unproven purported treatment for COVID advanced by Donald Trump, to combat the disease.

There’s no word where she stands on drinking bleach or injecting ultraviolet light into their body. 

But if it would keep Paul from having to wear a mask, I have a feeling he’d endorse both.

I bet the folks at Duke are so proud. 

Joseph Gerth can be reached at 502-582-4702 or by email at jgerth@courierjournal.com.