Anthony Fauci says Fox News should fire Jesse Watters “on the spot.” Why? Because Watters told those attending Turning Point USA’s AmericaFest conference that they should “ambush” Fauci with questions about the National Institutes of Health funding “gain-of-function” research at the Wuhan Institute of Virology. Watters said of the questioning he proposed:
Now you go in for the kill shot. The kill shot? With an ambush? Deadly. Because he doesn’t see it coming.
Clearly, Watters wasn’t advocating violence against Fauci. You can’t kill or injure anyone with questions, as much as questions might hurt someone’s feelings.
Watters should have known better than to use words like “kill shot” and “deadly.” But the notion that he should be fired, or even disciplined, for what he said lacks merit.
Fox News agrees. It stated:
Based on watching the full clip and reading the entire transcript, it’s more than clear that Jesse Watters was using a metaphor for asking hard-hitting questions to Dr. Fauci about gain-of-function research and his words have been twisted completely out of context.
Fauci has a stronger grievance against Lara Logan. She compared Fauci to the infamous Nazi doctor Josef Mengele. Fauci then criticized Fox for not taking disciplinary action against her.
Logan’s comparison is obscene. I understand her purported basis for it. The National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, which Fauci heads, funded clinical trials of drugs on HIV-positive foster children decades ago without providing advocates to oversee each of these children, as the law in many states where the research was conducted required.
Still, to compare testing drugs on sick children during an epidemic with Mengele’s experiments on children — which involved torture and the eventual killing of the subjects to enable him to proceed with autopsies and comparative analysis of their internal organs — is, as I said, obscene.
I can understand Fauci’s dismay that Fox News apparently hasn’t disciplined Logan. But Democrats and their backers, including some in the media, sometimes compare Republicans, including Republican presidents, to Hitler or to German Fascists generally.
It’s an unfortunate part of what passes for political discourse these days. I would hope that Fox News warned Logan against future obscene attacks on public figures, and maybe it has.
In the case of Watters, he should exercise a bit more self restraint in the future, but Fox News doesn’t need to discipline him.