Saturday, October 27, 2012

A Dog with Two Bones

That would be me, of late, the first bone being Ann Coulter's use of the word retard and the discussion that cropped up around it, the second being the looming threat of a Romney win and his promised repeal of the Affordable Care Act.

Some dogs chew more effectively on their bones, though, and my friend and fellow writer, Jeneva Stone is one of the big dogs. She re-posted one of her best this morning on Facebook, and I think it's not only required reading, it's imperative reading. I so wish the 24 people on my Facebook page who've checked LIKE on Mitt Romney's page would read Jeneva's essay. I wish many of my relatives would read Jeneva's essay. I hope that those of you indifferent to the Affordable Care Act will read Jeneva's essay and ponder on it a bit.

Here's an excerpt, but please read the entire, brilliant and impassioned plea.

A few years ago, I read most of T.R. Reid's book, The Healing of America, in which he suggests that universal healthcare arose in other countries through some sense of national commonality or other community sensibility: the Brits pulled together after WWII, the Germans rallied round the idea of the common German man (or person, I suppose), and I don't recall what drove the other countries' reasoning. Fairness, I suppose. Cost savings. Desire to improve quality of life. You know, all that reasonable stuff.
Well, not here. In his first chapter, Reid says, "Americans generally recognize now that our nation's health care system has become excessively expensive, ineffective, and unjust." Note that word "unjust." Read the status update above again. "Unjust" because, apparently, that's the way we like it. In his conclusion, Reid notes that "the American reliance on private, for-profit health insurance companies for the bulk of medical coverage is in accord with American values of capitalism and freedom."
As Americans, we value not only capitalism and freedom, we also value merit and "hard work." Because our health insurance system developed as a jobs benefit, we have become accustomed to associating access to health care with the ability to hold a job. People who can't hold jobs don't deserve "benefits" like health care. Because they are lazy, apparently.
Or at least that's the way Americans tend to think when we think at all. Most of the time we're too busy being independent pioneers and starting our own businesses and raising our children according each to her own individual belief that we really don't have time to think. Or when we have time to think we mostly think that Americans who whine about health care are lazy or have government jobs, otherwise known as "sucking on the government teat." Or some less polite spelling. I see that in comment threads all the time, which my husband constantly tells me to stop reading.

As my little sister says, I hear you barking, big dog.


  1. Although I live across the pond, I'm scared of a Romney presidency. I hope your fellow countrymen and women give Obama another chance.

    Greetings from London.

  2. Love it! Thank you for passing it on. I truly believe that the major obstacle to the adoption of a universal healthcare system is the dismantling of the money machine that is our current healthcare system. And that makes me immeasurably sad.

  3. Her piece should be published somewhere. My 18-year-old sister-in-law was just diagnosed with Lupus. Thanks to the Affordable Care Act, she can remain on her mother's insurance until she's 26. When she's 26, she can't be denied coverage because of her pre-existing condition. As long as the act isn't repealed, anyway.



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