The Politics and the Morality of the Health Care Reform Debate
Health care reform is not about President Obama and whether you like him or loathe him. It’s not about Democrats or Republicans, right wing or left, your team or mine. Health care reform is — or should be — about you and me, about human beings and one of our most basic needs.
It should be about providing adequate health care for all in America, one of the richest nations on earth, one which offers the finest health care to those fortunate enough to fall into the proper categories.
It should be about the unfair practice of rescinding insurance policies from people who are sick, about denying coverage to those who have had health problems in the past, or pricing those folks out of the market altogether.
It should be about the inability to qualify for a group policy because you don’t work for the right company, or the federal government, and losing coverage when you lose your job.
It should be about states that offer no protections for such people, or that have no high risk pools.
It should be about the lack of choice that is already a fact of life for many of us, and the insurance companies that routinely deny claims, ultimately resulting in denial of care.
It should be about the people who are satisfied with the system just the way it is because they benefit from quality employer-provided or government-provided medical coverage… and what they plan to do should they lose that benefit.
And it certainly should be about our esteemed members of Congress, who are able to choose from a variety of fine policies on taxpayer dollars, and why they feel so entitled to those benefits while saying “no” to the general public.
But instead of focusing on the very real problems of Americans, we’ve politicized it to such an extent that it is barely recognizable as a debate about health care. It’s about Obama haters, Nazis, and imaginary death camps, instead of about the needs of doctors and patients. It’s an argument against government as a whole, even from those who happily benefit from government entitlement programs, in an “I’ve got mine, you get yours” mentality.
It’s a war that will be won to one degree or another by the Democrats or by the Republicans, and the victory will be sweet. Either way, it most assuredly will leave extensive collateral damage. We the people are that collateral damage.
On a recent episode of Real Time with Bill Maher, Bill Moyers said of health care reform:
“I find it hard to understand why this country hasn’t embraced the notion of health care as a common human need to which everyone should have access regardless of their economic resources. I just don’t understand that.”
Neither do I.
Action Items in Support of Health Care Reform:
If you are truly opposed to any form of government-run health care, you’ll want to sign this petition: I Pledge to Deny Myself Medicare for Life!