Thursday, September 27, 2007

I Can't Smoke Because of My Asthma ANYWAY

I am normally a political junkie, but for reasons that should be obvious I have avoided adding drama to my life this year. And I certainly don't want to bring up anything divisive here, a space that is about Thomas only.

But man, as Thomas's mom, I cannot keep my mouth shut about health care this year. I heard three Republican pundits and politicos* today answer questions about health care with more or less this response: "People need to be take individual responsibility. blah blah blah Don't be obese or smoke."

I thought about this as I went in to change Thomas's diaper just now and adjust his bear and sheet. Poor Thomas. If he had known not to be overweight and not to smoke, he surely could have avoided the whole brain tumor thing.

I mean, if only his parents - a vet and a public school teacher when he was born - knew something about personal responsibility. Or had purchased expensive health insurance before he was born.

Oh wait, we did that.

Let's see. . . do I know anyone else with prohibitive medical costs? Well, my there's my elderly neighbor, who takes great care of herself, but is waiting for her Medicaid "donut hole" to be over so she can afford the expensive medicines she needs. She volunteers at the hospital and church and worked part-time until just recently. Man, I wish she was more responsible!

Then there's Scott's old boss, an entrepreneur who poured herself into the science education franchise that Scott managed. An amazing woman who paid to bring her -highly trained and legal - family members into the country, she had a hard time keeping full time employees because of the prohibitive costs of group insurance plans. Silly irresponsible small business owner, bringing millions of dollars into the area economy....

Look, I grew up in a government-managed health plan as a military brat - I realize how complicated large-scale solutions to this issue can be. But let's get real. Health care costs - not just the bills but the way that a major diagnosis can wipe out a family - are hurting our economy. Personal responsibilty isn't the issue; our collective pocketbooks are. We can come up with a better plan, and we must, no matter which side wins.

I don't care who you vote for. Just, when it comes to this issue, for Thomas's sake, find somebody who's not making up crap about the situation on the ground.


*This is not to let the Democrats off; it's just that they can't afford to ignore this issue the way the Republican primary candidates can. My thoughts here are the result of watching the Republican debate with none of the frontrunners attending last night, and a radio program featuring a strategist.

I am looking forward to hearing what the actual frontrunners have to say, and relieved to find out that none of the attendees at the debate have a shot at winning. (I really have had my head in a poltical hole)


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3 Comments:

At 11:46 AM, Blogger Thomas, as told to Sarah said...

"Dear Sarah,
You are totally right about this. That's why I agreed with Republican governors and at least 11 of my colleagues to support this bipartisan bill.
Thanks for writing me all those letters over the years. Now please stop.
Love Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison."





ok, she didn't write that. But she meant it.

 
At 11:41 AM, Anonymous kait said...

I got that letter too. :)

 
At 6:42 PM, Blogger Thomas, as told to Sarah said...

p.s. Scott is not a veterinarian. he's a veteran.

 

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