Dr. Fauci Heroically Refrains From Rand-Paul's-Neighboring Rand Paul
Yesterday, Sen. Rand Paul accused Dr. Anthony Fauci of wearing masks after being vaccinated in a display of mere "theatrics."
Yes, the same Rand Paul who just accused parents of "genitally mutilating" their transgender children by allowing them access to gender-affirming medical treatments. The same Rand Paul who deliberately walked into a crowd of racial justice protestors — under the watchful eyes of DC cops and dozens of reporters, of course — so he could tweet about being "attacked by an angry mob of over 100, one block away from the White House." The same Rand Paul who spent the entire Trump administration loudly promising to take a principled stand against Brett Kavanaugh, Trump's extra-legal foreign aggressions, the national debt, and government surveillance, only to fold like the cheap suit he is every single time.
The second to last guy on earth who should be accusing anyone of "theatrics" is Rand Paul. (The first is Sen.Ted Cruz, obviously.)
Just look at this shit.
"Let me just state for the record that masks are not theater, masks are protective" -- Fauci to Rand Paul https://t.co/tMIlch8Gby— Aaron Rupar (@Aaron Rupar) 1616090433.0
Paul, who LARPs as a maverick speaking truth to power via his frequent attacks on Fauci, got the stupid ball rolling yesterday by referring to a study in Science magazine showing low danger of reinfection after a bout of COVID-19.
"Given that no scientific studies have shown significant numbers of reinfections of patients previously infected or previously vaccinated, what specific studies do you cite that the public should be wearing masks into 2022?" Paul demanded.
"We're talking about people who have never been infected before," responded Fauci, with the demeanor of a teacher dealing once again with an obnoxious adolescent posing what he thinks is a clever gotcha.
"You're telling everybody to wear a mask whether they've had an infection or a vaccine. What I'm saying is they have immunity and everybody agrees they have immunity," smirked Paul. "What studies do you have that people who have had the vaccine or have had the infection are spreading the infection? If we aren't spreading the infection, isn't it just theater?"
"Here we go again with the theater," sighed the guy in this conversation with actual epidemiological expertise and a medical license that he didn't make up himself. "Let's get down to the facts."
He then explained that "everybody" does not "agree they have immunity," and in fact the study Paul referred to was in vitro, i.e. in a test tube, rather than in vivo, i.e. people out in the world testing their immune responses against a quickly mutating virus. Moreover, Fauci pointed out, Johnson & Johnson's study in South Africa demonstrated that it's entirely possible for people who have caught one variant of the virus to be reinfected if they are exposed to a different strain. "It was as if they weren't infected before," Fauci said. "They had no protection. So when you talk about reinfection, make sure you're talking about wild type."
Well! Rand Paul isn't going to stand for actual facts, Doctor Mister!
"What proof is there that there is significant reinfection with hospitalizations and death from the variants?" he interrupted. "None in our country. Zero." And then when Fauci tried to point out that actually we do have a bunch of different variants circulating here already, Paul jumped in to accuse him of "conjecture that we're going to get variants" and tricking Americans into wearing masks. It all just makes too much sense!
"You've been vaccinated and you parade around in two masks for show," he thundered, adding, "If you already have immunity, you're wearing a mask to give comfort to others. You're not wearing a mask because of any science."
Which is bullshit, of course. We're almost at end of this nightmare — if we don't fuck it up worse again — but no one knows exactly who can transmit the virus after infection and/or vaccination. And the fact that people aren't dying in hospitals after getting a shot is entirely irrelevant to the question of whether they can or can't pass it on to others.
But even if it were true and we did know for sure that vaccinated people couldn't be carriers, exactly what would be the problem with "wearing a mask to give comfort to others"? How does any of us know if the guy next to us got his second shot in February and is totally fine, or if he's just some Hannity-sniffing dipshit who's gonna stick it to The Man by refusing to get microchipped by Bill Gates and then breathing all over everyone at the grocery store? Exactly who is harmed by a recommendation that they wear a piece of cloth over their faces for a few more weeks so that we can all feel safe enough to leave the house?
I'm pretty confident I don't have mono, but I do try hard not to sneeze on people just the same. Which is apparently just woke theatrics, because I'm in the pocket of Big Tissues. But no more! Time to stand up to those bullies at Kleenex and Puffs with their feminizing soft paper to clutch daintily to your face. Share your snot spume far and wide! Sneeze it loud, spray it proud.
And when your neighbor socks you in the gut, tell 'em Rand sent ya. Seems to have worked out well for him so far.
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Liz Dye lives in Baltimore with her wonderful husband and a houseful of teenagers. When she isn't being mad about a thing on the internet, she's hiding in plain sight in the carpool line. She's the one wearing yoga pants glaring at her phone.