As Dr. Anthony Fauci prepares to step down as director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases at the end of the year, the leading immunologist faced taunts on social media over the weekend from tech billionaire and Twitter CEO Elon Musk.
“My pronouns are Prosecution/Fauci,” said the billionaire Twitter CEO, alluding to the practice of posting gender pronouns after one’s name, as well as the right-wing campaign to charge Fauci with crimes related to his involvement in politics. Americans against covid.
Musk also posted a meme showing Fauci telling US President Joe Biden: “Just one more lockdown, my king…”, in apparent criticism of the Covid mitigation measure that Musk has repeatedly criticized but which it has not been implemented in the country for more than a year.
While Musk’s tweet garnered roughly half a million likes in its first few hours online, health experts like Peter Hotez, a vaccine scientist and professor of virology, defended Fauci’s work at the forefront of pandemic mitigation efforts. from the US and urged Musk to remove the post.
Dr. Anthony Fauci announced his final retirement from public service on Monday after more than three decades serving as the top health adviser to US presidents. His departure from office would take effect in December of this year, in what the doctor indicated as “a new chapter” in his life.
His resignation would be three positions at once: the director of the National Institute of Allergies and Infectious Diseases, the head of the Immunoregulation Laboratory of that institution, and his position as chief medical adviser to the President.
At 81 years old, Dr. Fauci’s announcement was not entirely unexpected, and for a few months, there had been speculation about his retirement. In an interview on Sunday night, he assured that he would not retire “in the classic sense” of the word, but that he would devote himself to travelling, writing and motivating young people to enter public service.
Despite nearly 40 years as a respected figure in American public health, during the Donald Trump administration, Dr. Fauci was in the media spotlight. The president himself came to speculate with the idea of firing him as an adviser. However, something like that would have been complicated, since Fauci’s position is not political but technical. The most conservative sectors of North American politics saw a symbol of quarantines and masks in Dr. Fauci, something they strongly opposed.
Since becoming a leading figure in the fight against the pandemic in early 2020, Fauci has been hailed as a hero by some but condemned by others for his recommendations in support of social distancing, wearing masks and vaccinating to protect yourself against COVID-19. .
In particular, he clashed with former President Donald Trump, and Fauci spoke out against the growing misinformation and misinformation about mitigation policies and the virus itself. Recalling Trump’s false statements about COVID-19 while in office, Fauci said in a new interview with CNN that he felt he “had” to publicly disagree with the then-president despite his discomfort.
In that context, Fauci also had run-ins with Republican Senator Rand Paul of Kentucky, who publicly accused him of lying about research his institute was funding in China, where the virus had emerged. At the time, Fauci responded that “if there’s anyone here lying, it’s you, Senator.” Ahead of the midterm elections in November of this year, both Senator Paul and other Republican congressmen have speculated about opening an investigation against Fauci, should he win control of Congress.
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