Dr. Anthony Fauci, head of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, in June said churches should consider suspending their choir if located in an area with a high infection rate. On Friday, Fauci refused to say whether large protests should also be suspended.
“My recommendation still holds that the choirs should refrain from singing. When you sing and you protect your voice, the aerosols of the virus come out,” he said, contradicting Centers for Disease Control recommendations on socially distanced worship.
According to Newsy, the CDC also first wrote on their website that faith communities should “consider suspending or at least decrease the use of choir/musical ensembles, congregant singing, chanting or reciting during services…” Those initial recommendations then disappeared from the website overnight without an explanation. Fauci stood by the recommendation.
While state and local governments lock down bars and restaurants, and limit large gatherings like worship services, mass protests and demonstrations have been left free to flood city streets.
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During a House hearing of the committee investigating the Trump administration’s pandemic response, Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) asked Fauci, “Do protests increase the spread of the virus?”
“Crowding together, particularly when you’re not wearing a mask, contributes to the spread of the virus,” Fauci said. Jordan asked the question again. Fauci dodged, then claimed he didn’t think the protests question was relevant. “I’m not in a position to determine what the government can do in a forceful way,” he said.