Bill Maher is pushing back against blindly following the advice of Anthony Fauci and other doctors amid the coronavirus pandemic, saying, “Don’t sit there in your white coat and tell me ‘just do what we say.’ ”
“That’s not a criticism of them like they’re being corrupt, although there certainly is plenty of corruption in the medical establishment,” the “Real Time” host said in an interview with Deadline published Friday, when asked if he believes Fauci, the nation’s leading infectious disease doctor, or the medical establishment “really know what they are doing.”
“But I’ve always maintained that the big overarching theme should be that people look back and say, ‘Oh, look how far we’ve come medically.’ Yes, that’s true. We’re not putting wooden teeth in our mouth like in the George Washington era, and of course we have antibiotics and lots of vaccines and lots of other things that have been miraculous. But in general, we still don’t understand too much about how the human body works,” Maher said.
The medical community, the controversial HBO host said, has been wrong “a lot” throughout history.
“They drilled mercury into my teeth when I was a child. Now, of course, we don’t do that anymore, but do you really think in 50 years people will look back and say, ‘Oh, yeah, we had it all figured out in 2022’? No, they will be appalled at things we’re doing right now.”
Despite the country seeing more than 860,000 deaths from COVID-19 since 2020, Maher said he was “never scared” of the pandemic.
“I was always scared of the reaction to it, and as this has played out that only proved to be more true for me,” he told Deadline.
“It was never that virulent a threat, I thought, to people who were in good health,” he continued.
“Now, some people can’t help that they’re not in good health. We should, of course, protect the vulnerable, but it was mostly a disease of the very old, which every disease is a threat to, and people who have comorbidities, which mostly is due to lifestyle.”
Of vaccines, Maher — who tested positive for COVID-19 last May — said, “They just prevent you from dying, which is a great part of it, let’s not undercount that. But if they don’t prevent you from transmitting it and they don’t prevent you from getting it why are we still treating this disease the way we always have?”
COVID-19 has been known to lead to serious illness and death even in younger and middle-aged adults who are otherwise healthy, and studies have shown — and most public health experts agree — that vaccinations greatly reduce the chances of being hospitalized or dying from the coronavirus.
The comedian sounded off on Democrats and Republicans alike in the interview.
Maher said the country is much different than it was when “Real Time” first premiered in 2003.
“I think the politics around me have changed. In other words, the first years George W. Bush was president and the liberal half of the country was, I thought, pretty sane. Now, since about I don’t know 2015 or so there’s been a real sea change in what’s going on, on the left.”