Dr. Robert Stadler once corrected a student: “Free scientific inquiry? The first adjective is redundant.”
This is from p. 178 of my paperback edition Atlas shrugged by Ayn Rand. When I read this recently, I thought Anthony Fauci and Francis Collins, heads of the National Institutes of Health, were conspiring to shut down Jay Bhattacharya, Martin Kulldorf and Sunetra Gupta after they released the Great Barrington Declaration. Here is a link to the emails. I also thought about Fauci’s “much of what you see as an attack on me is an attack on science” in a 2021 interview. When you criticize a scientist, you attack the science but what Fauci doesn’t seem to see is that you are actually criticizing his thinking and giving him more to justify his conclusions.
More generally, we are seeing a strong attack on intellectual inquiry in academia. Various people fear that they will say the wrong thing and even lose their permanent position. James Sweet, head of the American Historical Association, apologized for some thoughtful comments on the matter. 1619 projectFor example.