Accuracy in Media

It looks like Dr. Anthony Fauci is going to have to be fired. Excellence in service at a time of great national need and all that, yes, but still, he’s got to go. That’s if we take what he’s just said on the straight and narrow: “The guy should be fired on the spot.”

That’s about a reporter and no, government bureaucrats – whatever the job title that is what Fauci is – don’t get to say that about a free media. Therefore, Fauci must be fired.

The background here is that Fox News host Jesse Watters talked about a “kill shot” on Fauci. In fact, “The kill shot, with an ambush — deadly, because he doesn’t see it coming.” Alarming and possibly even an illegal incitement to violence if it is to be taken straight and on that narrow. Really, taking out a bureaucrat with a sniper shot?

That isn’t how it was said, of course. Instead, the suggestion was to ask Fauci a question about the funding of coronavirus research at that Wuhan lab and that would be, as filmed, a rhetorical kill shot.

In response, Fauci said, “That’s awful that he said that. And he’s very likely going to go unaccountable,” Fauci said. “The guy should be fired on the spot.”

This is reported by both Vice and HuffPost, both of which should know better. Vice gains some 20 million views a month, the TV channel reaches 60 million American homes, the magazine distribution is 900,000 copies a time. Huffington Post still gains tens of millions of visits each month. Both should actually know that First Amendment part of the Bill of Rights – which is that government won’t interfere in the media.

It’s possible to say something along the lines that Fauci was just being rhetorical in his statement about a firing. But if that is true then the same courtesy should be extended to the more obvious original comment about a kill shot. Or, if the one is to be taken direct and simple then so too must the other.

And if Fauci is to be taken seriously, that he has just called for the firing of a reporter, then Fauci has to go. Because that’s just not what government bureaucrats get to do to a free media.

It’s either free speech, rhetoric and fair comment on both sides or Fauci goes, one or the other but no splitting of the difference.

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