Part-time White House pandemic adviser Dr. Scott Atlas already was called controversial in news coverage before suggesting Sunday that "people rise up" to resist an epidemic order tightening Michigan activity limits.
Now he's rebuked by Dr. Anthony Fauci, a fellow Covid task force member, and by a Washington Post editorial.
"He continues to make statements that will cause more illness and death. He ought to be fired immediately," the newspaper's opinion section says late Monday afternoon.
While the governor [Gretchen Whitmer] was desperately trying to save lives by slowing the virus transmission, Dr. Atlas was urging people to disobey and revolt. This is incendiary talk, especially since the governor was the target of a kidnapping plot foiled by the FBI before the election. ...
If Dr. Atlas' advice is followed, more people will get sick and die. ... Telling people to disobey the governor and "rise up" is appallingly ignorant and foolish.
Earlier Monday, Fauci said: "I totally disagree with the stand he takes."
► More pushback: Reactions from Michigan's governor, attorney general and Detroit's mayor are here.
Atlas, a Northern California neuroradiologist and former medical professor, is a senior fellow at The Hoover Institution, a conservative center at Stanford University. "Dr. Atlas has expressed views that are inconsistent with the university’s approach in response to the pandemic," it says Monday. "Dr. Atlas’ statements reflect his personal views, not those of the Hoover Institution or the university."
In September, a month after he joined the White House Coronavirus Task Force, 78 researchers and doctors from Stanford Medical School criticized their ex-colleague for "falsehoods and misrepresentation of science."
"Many of his opinions and statements run counter to established science, and, by doing so, undermine public-health authorities and the credible science that guides effective public health policy," they say in a two-page open letter to colleagues, noting Atlas' advocacy against mask use and in favor of letting young people contract the coronavirus in hopes of achieving "herd immunity."
Another critic is Dr. Ashish Jha, dean of Brown University's School of Public Health, who calls Atlas' Sunday tweet "particularly irresponsible" and says: "He is ... a disgrace to our profession."