It’s been a rough week for National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases Director Tony Fauci, the chief medical advisor to the president. No one in power has been as wrong about so much, so consistently as him. And while I started out having hopes that he could help align the nation’s COVID-19 response, it’s become obvious that not only does Fauci not know what he’s doing, he may be actively sabotaging our nation’s health to cover his own backside.

But this is an important question — clown or evil elf? There’s plenty of evidence for both. Fauci was the original spokesman way back in March 2020 against masks. But when he saw the potential to turn our lives into clown world, he started advocating for them. More recently, our proponent of clown world told us to “mask up!” at outdoor football games — perhaps the stupidest, unscientific notion possible at this stage of the pandemic.

Just so you understand, dear reader — think about the enforcement impossibilities of mask mandates at football games. You’d a) have to have lots of security guards, and b) those selfsame temporary employees would have to be willing to risk life and limb attempting to get a drunken college kid to get their mask over their nose while their belly was full of Everclear and grape juice. Trust me — there are not enough labor-ready employees on game day, loitering outside the Home Depot in Lewiston to pull off that nonsense; $14 an hour just ain’t worth it. Besides the obvious science that says that masks are ineffective at best — and entirely irrelevant in outside venues.

There are so many missteps by Fauci, one might have preferential leanings toward “Chief Clown at the National Institutes of Health.” Certainly, with the ensemble of bad advice out of that organization, one could make the case.

But this has not been a good week for labeling Fauci the chief clown. He’s been busy as a clown, of course. But his role as evil elf has really been in the forefront of the news cycle. Consider the latest pronouncement on the national news shows earlier this week, where Fauci came out and told folks not to make Christmas plans. Killing Grandma again was the reason, though the vast majority of us have followed the various mandates to get vaccinated. Including Grandma. With boosters. The Biden administration sent out their official evil elf handlers from the CDC, yanked Fauci off the stage, made up some BS story about how it was all a big mistake, and that folks should gather for Christmas with their families.

That’s certainly enough to earn him the evil elf label. Christmas and elves go together. And only evil elves want to sabotage the holiday season.

But unfortunately, that’s not the end of it. More information is emerging on the connections between Fauci, a researcher named Peter Daszak, and the Wuhan lab. No red string or pinboard needed to connect the dots on whether Fauci funded “gain of function” research on the Sars-COV virus. It’s all in a string of leaked grant proposals to both the Department of Defense (which said no) and Fauci at his position at the NIH, who said yes. Worse, it’s becoming evident that Fauci funded work that actually released COVID into the wild through bats. It’s so stunning, it seems almost impossible to believe.

But it explains a lot, at least with the evil elf take. Why would such a charlatan keep us in constant turmoil, if not to distract from his evil misdeeds? While the rest of us, and especially our children, deal with guidance from the CDC that turns our lives into clown world, Fauci is executing a double switcheroo so we end up blaming poor peasants and pangolins in China for a global pandemic that he, in no small part, engineered.

“It didn’t have to be that way” is one of the taglines of the pandemic. It didn’t — but now it’s time for accountability for the real source of our misery. Clown or evil elf — it makes no difference. Fire Fauci now.

Pezeshki is a professor in mechanical and materials engineering at Washington State University.

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