Whatever the outcome of all this there is a very strong message here, that science and scientists now have the ability to produce genetic manipulations of viruses and that some of these ‘gain of function’ manipulations are very dangerous and have extremely serious implications, either by design or by accident. But sadly this controversy is not addressing this issue in the sense that it is being highly politicized and highjacked by various vested interest groups, including conspiracy theorists. It would be refreshing if a strong group of scientists come out openly and address this question and demand the end to these and other types of research which weaponizes science to the detriment and not to the benefit of mankind.
I am in basic agreement with you that ‘the establishment’ and its sway on permissibility on views and money distribution, is a major driver of some of the ‘scientific’ views. Also it is not clear as to what extent there is some collusion or some subcontracting going on between the US and China in all of this, as some of the scientists discrediting the lab escape theory are themselves involved in these collaborations.