overcoming average(?)

because it’s something the world just needs less of

my response

with 4 comments

it got way crazier than i expected on facebook the other day. (you can see for yourself here.) as most people know, i am for universal health care. i don’t believe in socialism, fascism, communism, capitalism, or too many other “-ism’s” for that matter. ferris bueller taught me that. the only beliefs i truly regard and try to follow are those passed down throughout the bible; specifically, what Jesus taught about loving God the Father and loving our neighbor as ourselves. after reading through the currently 46 comments, i thought i should maybe take the time to explain the reasons about why i’m so vocal about this issue.

i had health insurance as a kid, and like most kids, never really thought about it. then i turned 18 and was no longer under my mom’s coverage unless i currently lived with them and was in school. that only lasted a year. my mom and her new husband moved and i made a very difficult decision to stay in riverside despite not having a car that worked, a consistently paying job, or a place to live. i was a homeless college dropout for precisely one week. i also for the first time realized that i had almost literally no safety net. if i got sick, i couldn’t afford to get help. because i was technically self-employed i couldn’t qualify for low-income care either. fortunately, i’m a relatively healthy person overall and nothing really happened. during the two and a half years between then and when i got married, that was my situation. i got married and my wife happened to be going to a medical school. she had great coverage simply by being a student, but student’s spouses aren’t covered by that. we made just enough money to get by and there was definitely no room in our budget for me to buy health insurance. one day, i got sick. it was different than any other kind of sickness i’d ever dealt with, and i was scared. after a couple days, we made the hard decision to go to the emergency room. my poor wife was so scared and worried about what it was going to cost us. we were just hoping and praying that it wasn’t something worse than it was for the sake of my well-being and eventually our finances. in the end, the virus of whatever it was ended up lasting about five days and i’m no worse for the wear. after a 20 minute doctor visit and a quick lab test, it actually only cost us about $150. it was a ton of money to us at the time, but we were able to pay it eventually. i can’t help but think about what might have happened if it would have been something worse though. it would have put us so deep into a financial hole that, between student loan payments and the the current economic climate, i don’t know we would have been able to get out of for quite some time.

i’m not for universal health care because i so strongly believe that wealthy people need to share. i think they should though, and hope that were i in their position would hold to that value. i honestly don’t care about the particulars of one reform plan versus another. also, the more i think about it, the more i become convicted that i shouldn’t care if illegal immigrants get health care or not. that last one is a struggle for me. my true honest belief that is the one that makes me think that health care for all should be a reality is that according to the Christian faith, money is not something to be withheld to the detriment of others. believe me, as far as political ideologies are concerned, i am for as little government as possible. our government is going to take our money anyway, and if they’re going to take it and use it for something like universal health care, then i’m much more ok with that than the myriad other uses of tax dollars.

i also feel the need to be completely open about the fact this isn’t some conviction i’ve decided upon a whim either. i struggle with this. like i said already, i’m not a fan of big government or even necessarily higher taxes. also, i periodically have to truly check my motives, more so if i’m bringing my religious convictions into play. i truly believe that every human being is a child of God whether they acknowledge that or not. we could very well be spending eternity with those souls our greed and selfishness has caused us to turn our backs on. most of my life i’ve felt like i didn’t totally agree with the idea of “christians are by default aligned with the republican right,” and a lot of the time feel like i’m fighting against a stereotype. if there’s one thing i’ve learned though, it’s that “fighting against” something is rarely, if ever, a better idea than fighting for something.

i don’t expect to have changed anyone’s mind with writing this. the most i’m really hoping is for whoever reads this to have a better understanding about where i’m coming from with this. in the meantime, let’s keep challenging each other. please, let’s all be checking our motives though, especially those of us who are called to have more eternally minded motives

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Written by matt

November 11, 2009 at 1:17 pm

4 Responses

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  1. I posted something on Facebook about a month or so ago about Obama revising the current method of lending for students and how I was happy about that. I think I lost a friend over it. I think people get so attached to one viewpoint and method of action that when another idea comes along, they panic that things will change for the worse.

    Rose

    November 11, 2009 at 1:51 pm

  2. i think some of us branded “white right-wing conservative middle-class evangelical Christians” (he hee) are just worried about what this STARTS. about the principals this country was founded on … how those are slowly but surely slipping away … about what “rights” (like freedom to worship) will go next … also … as a mother -and while this may be terribly selfish- i worry about the efficiency of socialized healthcare … i’ve heard the horror stories of things like it taking 6 months to have a cancerous tumor removed … i think of how “powerless” it makes me , for instance , if one of my babies got sick … oh … and my mother in law was in london 3 years ago and took a fall that left a bone sticking out of her wrist and because it was easter … the. hospitals. were. closed. closed. that seem ludicrous right?

    we’ve always had insurance since we’ve been married, we’ve had it completely covered by one company, we’ve paid for it ourselves while unemployed, and we currently spend HUNDREDS to have it. while socialized, or government run care, will cost me much less, i still wouldn’t change the right to choose though!

    sometimes i think were are just blind to how easy we have it until “it” changes. okay. those are just my “thoughts”!

    schron

    November 11, 2009 at 2:27 pm

  3. I understand the confusion people have with what’s right and wrong when it comes to health care. There is a conflict between what choices we have as individuals and also as Christians.

    I find it hard to comprehend support for small government and support for socialized medicine. I also don’t get support for less taxes and not caring if others have to pay for whatever moralities congress legislates. We lose freedom every time our government takes from us what we have rightfully earned. For every dime our administration takes from us there is less money for us to choose to supports others in need.

    The vast majority have no idea how the whole health industry works. They believe the government supports Pharma with research money. It is actually the other way around. Pharma gives the government money through the public university system to support research at the academic level. People believe that health insurance companies have these ridiculous profit margins and that they refuse care based on profits. Insurance company’s profit margins hover right around 5%. The vast majority on patients who are refused coverage have pre-existing conditions. The equivalent of you wrecking your car and then trying to buy coverage through State Farm so they will cover your previous accident.

    The majority of the issues that Americans have with our health coverage can be solved with simple legislation. One simple, digestible bill could solve the pre-existing condition debate by forcing Insurance companies to care for those individuals. Patents on biologicals also has the possibility of lowering the cost of medications drastically.

    Lastly the most money could be saved by Tort reform. For everyone who doesn’t know what tort is (Tort is a system for compensating wrongs and harm done by one party to another’s person, property or other protected interests). In our country you can litigate against another person for simply making a mistake. Imagine all of us had to fork out $100k every year just in case we made a mistake at work. The majority of money collected in our civil courts versus the medical system originates from cases where the litigant knew what the risk of the procedure or medicine they were taking was. The reason Tort reform has not been a part of any legislation coming from the left is because the largest donor to the entire DNC is trial lawyers. Everyone has had to take a step back and adjust the way they profit in our industry except for lawyers. THINK ABOUT IT.

    Only a sociopath finds joy in someone being uninsured. Our system already insures the elderly and the poor. Covering the cases that are typically presented to gain support for the left current bills are easily solved with the legislation listed above. And for Matt’s mentioned fears of being uninsured in his early 20’s. If something horrible had happened you would have had health care provided. If you could not pay your bill in the end you could have filed bankruptcy. There is Republican legislation to limit the damage done to your credit score after filing bankruptcy for health care costs.

    Micah

    November 11, 2009 at 3:29 pm

  4. i think some of us branded “white right-wing conservative middle-class evangelical Christians” (he hee) are just worried about what this STARTS. about the principals this country was founded on … how those are slowly but surely slipping away … about what “rights” (like freedom to worship) will go next … also … as a mother -and while this may be terribly selfish- i worry about the efficiency of socialized healthcare … i’ve heard the horror stories of things like it taking 6 months to have a cancerous tumor removed … i think of how “powerless” it makes me , for instance , if one of my babies got sick … oh … and my mother in law was in london 3 years ago and took a fall that left a bone sticking out of her wrist and because it was easter … the. hospitals. were. closed. closed. that seem ludicrous right?
    +1

    Bron Leiding

    May 26, 2010 at 3:26 am


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