Dr. Deborah Birx Gets Pushback for Violating Her Own Standards

“We cannot go into the holiday season, Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanza, with the same kind of attitude, that those gatherings don’t apply to me.” That was Dr. Deborah Birx of the White House Coronavirus Task Force, speaking to reporters on December 6. Dr. Birx had also warned about gatherings on Thanksgiving, and the day after she violated her own guidelines with a trip to a vacation home in Delaware, in the company of two households.

Her post-Thanksgiving caper prompted a response from virologist Angela Rasmussen, of the Georgetown Center for Global Health Science and Security. According to Rasmussen, who earned a PhD in microbiology from Columbia University, Dr. Birx’s action “disqualifies” her from future government health positions.

“I’ve been reluctant to criticize Dr. Deborah Birx,” Rasmussen tweeted, “because she’s the only woman in an overwhelmingly male coronavirus task force, and she has a long history of doing critical work to address the HIV/AIDS pandemic.” Even so, “That ends today, she lied to the American public.”

In similar style, California Gov. Gavin Newsom violated his own guidelines for gatherings with a raucous bash at the upscale French Laundry, with more than 20 in attendance and nary a mask in sight. On November 7, San Francisco mayor London Breed also violated the guidelines by slipping into the French Laundry for a birthday dinner with family members. The double standards and hypocrisy should not obscure the larger issue in play. The government medical establishment has proved better at controlling the people than curbing the pandemic, or preventing the pandemic.

As we noted, the Centers for Disease Control deploys the Epidemic Intelligence Service, a cadre of elite officers tasked to prevent contagious diseases from arriving on American soil. In the case of COVID-19, the EIS was a complete failure, but no word whether anyone was disciplined, demoted or dismissed. In government, incompetence and double standards have never been an obstacle to promotion. Rasmussen’s complaint aside, Dr. Birx is not disqualified for future government health positions.

K. Lloyd Billingsley is a Policy Fellow at the Independent Institute and a columnist at The Daily Caller.
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