Sometimes, in dark moments like the current coronavirus pandemic, it becomes easy to fall into a pattern of fear and despair.
That combination can be just as devastating — if not more so — than the actual disease.
Therefore, it’s natural to look for light moments, or things that can help brighten the dark times.
They can be an uplifting story, like Chick-fil-A delivering meals to hospital staffers, encouraging news like how Domino’s Pizza is hiring 10,000 workers, or it could be just a funny moment.
On Friday, we got the latter on multiple levels, when Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, sparked a mini-media controversy with his reaction to a joke President Donald Trump slipped in during an appearance on national television.
During a White House briefing on the Wuhan coronavirus, also known as COVID-19, Trump was asking reporters to direct questions to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.
“Secretary of State Pompeo is extremely busy, so if you have any question for him right now, could you do that? Because — you know what I’d like to do? I’d like him to go back to the State Department or, as they call it, the ‘Deep State Department.’ If you don’t mind, I’d like to have him go back and do his job. So does anybody have any question?” Trump said.
The Daily Caller noted that Fauci’s reaction to the video was to apparently start to laugh, before he got it under control.
You can see what he did at the 17-second mark of this video.
Liberals, of course, didn’t see it as Fauci laughing at a joke the president told.
Since Fauci’s a popular figure among much of the American public these days, some in the anti-Trump mainstream media tried to spin it as Fauci being dismayed instead of amused.
Kelly O’Donnell of NBC News was one, saying on Twitter, “Dr Fauci reacted by putting his hand over his face.”
The president’s apparent anger on display as he used the derogatory term “Deep State Department” and Dr Fauci reacted by putting his hand over his face. Watch. pic.twitter.com/Ks7j4WciVt
— Kelly O'Donnell (@KellyO) March 20, 2020
One thing all observers can agree on:
In the moment, Fauci put his hand to his face — breaking one of the rules he has been hammering home during this pandemic that was exacerbated by the People’s Republic of China’s efforts to cover it up.
But in this case, breaking a rule to enjoy a quick chuckle might have been worth it.
Because sometimes, to beat a pandemic, it takes more than a vaccine or a drug.
You also need to be able to laugh.
Heck, there’s a reason Reader’s Digest has had a long-running column called “Laughter is the Best Medicine.”
We just can’t argue with that.