by Kerry Dougherty
Travel back in time with me to the first weekend in September. Anyone remember what the COVID fear peddlers screamed when they saw packed college football stadiums during Week One of the 2021 season?
Just wait two weeks!
Masks! Where are their masks?
And then there was the leader of America’s lockdowners, Anthony Fauci.
When the stadiums were rocking from Blacksburg to College Station to Ann Arbor, Fauci disapproved.
He likes his stadiums empty.
Fauci made the rounds of the Sunday shows and others that week, clearly disturbed that college football fans were flocking back to their seats.
Naturally, his disciples in the mainstream media expressed their disapproval, too. There was this, from CNBC:
“It’s an exciting time to be an American sports fan, from the U.S. Open tennis tournament and college football to the upcoming NFL season and MLB playoffs. Plenty of venues are either at capacity or expected to sell out soon.
“But now isn’t the time to prove that you’re a diehard fan. Rather, says Dr. Anthony Fauci, it’s too soon for fans to head back to full stadiums for in-person games. “I don’t think it’s smart,” the White House chief medical advisor told CNN’s “New Day” on Tuesday.
Looks like Fauci and friends were wrong. Again.
On Monday, Virginia Tech President Tim Sands sent a COVID update to the student body and it was filled with good news.
Sands noted that from August 23 to September 17 there were 158 positive COVID tests on campus. During the same period in 2020, Tech had 823 cases.
Here’s the best part:
Our outdoor events have not been associated with an increase in COVID-19 incidence. We estimate that 17,000 Virginia Tech students and thousands of Virginia Tech employees were in attendance at our first football game on Sept. 3. As of Sept. 17, the seven-day average of daily positive cases on our campus was 4.7 and the seven-day average of positivity was 1.0 percent, compared to 8.1.
Is this a fluke?
Doesn’t look like it. Yesterday The University of Michigan reported a similar decrease in positive tests on campus after more than 100,000 fans squeezed into the Big House on September 4th to see the Wolverines beat the Western Michigan Broncos 47-14.
When I saw these happy new stats, I thought of London Breed, mayor of San Francisco. She got caught busting a maskless move in a crowded club last weekend and was criticized for her carelessness. After all, she issued the city’s latest indoor mask mandate.
Nevertheless, Breed owned her actions:
“Don’t feel as though you have to be micromanaged about mask wearing,” she said. “Like, we don’t need the fun police to come in and try and micromanage and tell us what we should or shouldn’t be doing. “
She’s right. Why should we pay attention to the fun police? They lie in wait and pounce any time they see folks enjoying themselves.
And the captain of the fun police is Anthony Fauci, the frequently-wrong-but-never-in-doubt chief medical advisor to the president.
Ignore him. Head to a football game this weekend.
It’ll feel like old times. It’s just what the doctor ordered.