Zakaria: Doctors and Scientists Don’t Decide Policy with Us ‘Blindly’ Following in a Democracy, They Only Have One Perspective

During an interview aired on Friday’s edition of PBS’ “Firing Line,” CNN host Fareed Zakaria stated that “Doctors and scientists don’t get to decide for everybody in a democracy what policy is going to be and we don’t blindly follow” and doctors and scientists only view things through the lens of minimizing the spread of disease, which isn’t the only objective that matters.

Zakaria said, “Doctors and scientists don’t get to decide for everybody in a democracy what policy is going to be and we don’t blindly follow. Because, frankly, they have one particular perspective. For example, in their case, it is: minimize the spread of this disease, which is the most important objective. It is absolutely the one they should have. But it’s not the only one. We also have an economy that we have to think about. And if you say that you can slow the spread of this virus by 15% by shutting down the entire economy and putting 50 million people out of work, we would say that’s not a risk/reward ratio that makes sense. And that’s why everybody needs to be involved in this. I quote Clemenceau, who during World War I, said, war is too important to be left to generals. Well, pandemics are too important to be left to scientists. It’s not that their perspective is not important, probably the single most important one. But there are other issues you have to think about. You have to think about what is the price of shutting down a society, shutting down an economy, putting people — kids out of school, and you’ve got to balance the two. And that’s why, ultimately, in a democracy, this has to be done by all of us, not just by the experts.”

Follow Ian Hanchett on Twitter @IanHanchett

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