Medical Experts Aren't Qualified to Make All the Decisions

AP featured image
Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, listens as President Donald Trump speaks about the coronavirus in the James Brady Briefing Room, Tuesday, March 24, 2020, in Washington. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

If there’s one thing I continuously see from Democrat authoritarians when it comes to explaining is that they’re just following the advice and guidance of medical professionals.

Let’s be very clear. Following the advice of medical professionals is a great thing. They have insight into things that we who have never been to medical school don’t know and their knowledge is invaluable.

That said, we need to be careful about how high we value their view on what course of action we should take in the event of situations like the one we’re in now. A doctor can tell you what the best course of action is when it comes to preventing the spread of sickness, however, we should understand that their expertise begins and ends with medicine and health. They aren’t qualified to understand much else.

I write this because yesterday, Kentucky Senator Rand Paul and Dr. Anthony Fauci of Trump’s Coronavirus Task Force had an exchange that appeared to be a little tense during Tuesday’s hearing.

Fauci had just gotten done saying that he has a hunch that 80,000 deaths is likely a conservative number and that America could experience “needless suffering and death” if the country opens up too quickly. Paul took his turn to point out that model after model, including the model’s that Fauci had followed, had been wrong and that keeping lockdowns in place is not only unwise, there’s no science to support it. He suggested that Sweden had the right idea all along and that Fauci is not the “end-all.”

The exchange earned Rand the ire of online mobs. As my colleague Bonchie put it perfectly, this is because while Fauci agrees he’s not the “end-all,” many Americans see him that way:

Fauci would go on to quip that he’s never said he’s the “end-all.” While that may be true, he isn’t naive enough to not realize that many people see him as that. That means his words carry incredible weight, perhaps more than the President’s. Too often, he’s chosen to produce conflicting commentary or repeat doomsday predictions regarding re-openings that haven’t been born out by the facts. For example, Georgia started their re-opening over two weeks ago. They are still seeing cases decline. The same is true for Florida.

Fauci may have been wrong on the overall outcome of the virus, but it should be known that he was working off of the information given to him by both medical organizations around the world and his own medical education. His job is to see the worst-case scenario and try to prevent it. In other words, Fauci is just doing his job when he suggests more lockdowns. I can’t blame him for coming to the conclusions he has.

That said, Fauci’s job makes him susceptible to the wrong action. In the grand scheme, if Fauci were given complete control over the country we’d all suffer greatly. Fauci’s medical expertise doesn’t include expertise on economic facts, how businesses are run, personal budgeting, stock markets, industrial production, and more. How could he? His job is to see one ingredient in a very massive pie.

This is why we need to be very careful about following the advice of experts like Fauci to the letter. There needs to be a balance. Handing over the nation to follow the advice of one kind of expert is like allowing your doctor to design your car. It’ll likely be very safe, but it will also be incredibly expensive and chances are it’s not going to work well if it works at all. Your life will become far more difficult if it’s your only car, and you’ll suffer far more for having bought it than not.

Paul may have come off as the villain yesterday but, in truth, he was completely correct. Fauci’s medical advice needs to be taken, true, but it needs to be taken with a grain of salt and with other expert opinions on various other topics. A balance needs to be struck.

Americans need to remember that doctors are qualified for one thing, but not for everything else.


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