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Not in the clear over mask stupidity: North Carolina juror arrested for refusing to wear mask despite no mandate in place

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Mask Mandate

We are not out of the ‘follow the science’ pandemic woods just yet. A man in North Carolina was arrested for not wearing a mask. Gregory Hahn reported for jury duty last week and wound up in prison after he refused to put a mask on in court, despite there being no local mask mandates in place.

“I never thought I would show up to jury duty and end up behind bars,” Gregory Hahn told Fox News’ Tucker Carlson Tonight.

Not only were there no mandates in place, but Hahn told WRAL there were signs in the courthouse saying no masks were required and that he and 98 other jury candidates “all walked in.”

Apparently one specific judge made the requirement for his personal courtrooms. Clerk of superior court Renee Whittenton told WRAL that Harnett County court judge Charles Gilchrist is the only one that requires a mask.

“You can go in any district courtroom without a mask, you can come into superior clerk court without a mask and the [district attorney’s] office without a mask, but with Judge Gilchrist he has a mandate that you must wear a mask,” Whittenton said.

National Review reported that Whittenton gave the outlet a written statement saying each juror had been told about Gilchrist’s mask requirement at check-in and that each juror was given a mask to wear.

Hahn refused Gilchrist’s order to wear a face covering, and despite not breaking any local masking laws, the judge had him arrested and sent to jail for contempt of court.

“It was the worst 24 hours of my life. I was refused to make a phone call to my minor child who is home,” said Hahn, a U.S. Navy veteran and single father.

He said he asked Gilchrist to excuse him since it was just one day in jail but the judge allegedly replied: “I could, but I’m not going to.”

Hahn said that the “irony of all this is the judge was talking to me without a mask.”

“If safety was such a concern, I go to jail, no mask requirements with inmates,” he said.

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COVID-19

New data reveals NIH scientists collected $710 Million in royalties during pandemic

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New data from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) reveal that the agency and its scientists collected $710 million in royalties from late 2021 through 2023. These payments, made by private companies such as pharmaceutical firms, are for licensing medical innovations developed by government scientists. A significant portion of these funds — $690 million — was directed to the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), led by Dr. Anthony Fauci, and its 260 scientists.

An in depth report by the New York Post reveals that the vast majority of the royalties collected during the pandemic era went to NIAID, the subagency under Dr. Fauci. The NIH has been secretive about disclosing details of this private royalty complex. OpenTheBooks.com, an organization advocating for government transparency, had to sue to uncover royalties paid from September 2009 to October 2021, which amounted to $325 million over 56,000 transactions. A second lawsuit, with Judicial Watch as counsel, was necessary to release the latest data.

During the pandemic, royalty payments to the NIH more than doubled compared to the previous twelve years combined, amounting to $1.036 billion. However, it remains unclear if royalties from COVID-19 vaccines, particularly from Pfizer and Moderna (the latter having agreed to pay $400 million to NIH), are included in these figures. The NIH has not provided clarity on this matter.

Dr. Anthony Fauci, a key figure in the U.S. COVID-19 response, is set to testify before the House Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Pandemic to address potential conflicts of interest and transparency issues that have plagued NIH’s handling of royalties and FOIA requests.

Fauci’s deputy, Dr. David Morens, has been implicated in using strategies to circumvent the federal Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), such as misspelling words and using physical couriers for messages. These actions have drawn significant criticism and calls for greater transparency.

Senator Rand Paul (R-Ky.) has sponsored the Royalty Transparency Act, which has unanimously passed the committee stage and is awaiting a floor vote. This act aims to provide greater transparency regarding royalty payments to government scientists.

 

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