President Joe Biden has received some criticism for casting unvaccinated Americans as the root cause of the COVID-19 pandemic’s continued spread.
As the Christmas holiday approaches, chief White House medical adviser Dr. Anthony Fauci is taking the rhetoric a step further by calling on Americans to disinvite their unvaccinated friends and relatives from holiday celebrations.
“Maybe another time”
According to Fox News, Fauci weighed in on the subject this week during an interview focused on the perceived threat of the latest surge in COVID-19 infections.
MSNBC host Alicia Mendez asked her guest directly if he believed that vaccinated Americans should ask unvaccinated loved ones “not to show up” this year.
“Yes, I would do that,” Fauci replied. “I think we’re dealing with a serious enough situation right now that if there’s an unvaccinated person I would say, ‘I’m very sorry, but not this time. Maybe another time when this is all over.'”
His remark likely resonated within many progressive circles, but it prompted a widespread backlash on social media.
A short time after that interview, Fauci participated in a press briefing in which he seemed to suggest that even fully vaccinated individuals should abstain from large gatherings of a couple of dozen people or more.
“Maybe require that people show evidence”
While he initially asserted that vaccinated and boosted relatives could safely gather during the holidays, provided they had recently tested negative for the virus, he warned against any celebrations larger than that.
“But I want to make sure this is not confused with going to a large gathering — and there are many of these — parties that have 30, 40, 50 people in which you do not know the vaccination status of individuals,” he cautioned. “Those are the kind of functions — in the context of COVID and particularly in the context of Omicron — that you do not want to go to.”
Fauci went on to urge all Americans “to stay away from those situations that could put you at a higher risk.”
Earlier this month, he called on private citizens to implement their own vaccine mandates.
“If they invite people over to their home, essentially ask and maybe require that people show evidence that they are vaccinated, or give their honest and good faith word that they have been vaccinated,” Fauci said at the time, according to Fox.