A Divide So Wide, A Healthcare Disconnection So Deep
I'm going to give you a rather substantial excerpt from the beginning:
The rest of it is good, too.
Our national obsession with individualism and the attainment of personal wealth is so sick and so deep for some of our fellow citizens that even the bonds of marriage are often no match for the selfishness.
A woman with advanced breast cancer schedules her chemo and her radiation so that by the time the worst physical side-effects set in, she is at the weekend and can sufficiently recover to allow a return to work on Mondays. She has negotiated remote work-time on chemo days and the day after. She pays for her family’s for-profit, private health insurance because her husband is a small business owner whose business has felt deep losses during the recession. She must keep working if she wants the care that is attacking her cancer.
If it sounds brutal, that’s because it is.
I had occasion to chat with her husband. He believes that I am misguided in my work for a progressively financed, single standard of high quality care for all. He said, “You know, government can’t and shouldn’t do everything for us. It’s up to us to pull ourselves up by the bootstraps.” Huh?
He really used those words. While his wife struggles to keep the premiums for the for-profit, health insurance paid, his bootstraps are sagging. Yet, he shows no sign of wavering from his entrenched position. He is not particularly active politically. He is not in the Tea Party or the Republican Party or any party. Yet his obsessive selfishness learned through intense cultural and societal indoctrination is so strong that he can bury the reality his wife is living and cloak himself in righteous anti-establishment, anti-government propaganda.
I've listened to conservatives who don't have insurance argue with me against universal health care. It boggles my mind - really.