I’m not the most politically active guy in the room. Trust me. Neither do I claim a party as my own. If you simply must label me, let’s call me moderate. With ever increasing intensity from conservative extremists whom I will dub from here on out “the crazies”, I feel that something needs to be said for the democrats who are facing some of the most outrageous persecutions we’ve seen in civilized America.

Personally, I see the healthcare reform bill as a breath of fresh air; a penetration of the most unfortunate of our citizens into the same access to life and health that those with money and privilege have enjoyed for half a century. I understand that people are afraid. All change brings a certain level of fear, and rightly so; but change is the very foundation of America. We are here today living lives of unprecedented freedom due to the need for a change; the promise of a better life. Has it been all roses and unicorns? Of course not, but we have enjoyed some of the greatest prosperity in civilized history.

Which brings us to the bill that everyone loves to hate: the healthcare reform bill. This legislation is one of the most ambitious and sweeping reforms we’ve ever seen in our great democracy. The dire situation in the healthcare industry is one of our own design. We created this beast by putting private industry in the driver’s seat. Insurance should never have become our only gateway to decent healthcare, and because we gave the keys to our very survival to corporate interest, the system spiraled into the mess it is today. Hospitals and doctors bloated the cost of healthcare because they knew insurance would cover it and in turn the prices continued to rise steadily over the last few decades. Fees have ballooned to such an outrageous level that when I went to see a specialist (without insurance mind you) they charged me $300 for roughly 5 minutes of the doctor’s time. Could this have existed without insurance. If health insurance didn’t exist, do you think that doctor would really have the gall to look every patient in the face and demand these astronomical rates for mere moments of his day?

Access to insurance has become so vital to the common man that companies use it to control their workers. People are afraid to strike out on their own or take any time off or to switch companies because they are so afraid of losing their healthcare coverage. Add to that the fact that insurance companies are doing their absolute best to stop coverage for those who are in the greatest need. The lives of these people are quantified into dollars and cents, and those who are worse then the rest are dropped; their lives forfeit for the cost of their care. It is truly an abomination! I once overheard a pastor in a church reducing the weekly attendance to a dollar per head amount. I haven’t been back there in 5 years.

When I heard that healthcare reform had passed, I was elated. I was pleased that the American people had found it in their heart to stand up for the weak and alone. Their generosity inspiring me to something greater in myself. I was on the edge of my seat in the days leading up to this momentous vote and the american people came through!

In the wake of this decision, however, the crazies have made their voices heard, to the tune of racial slurs, threats of violence and murder, and even spitting on members of congress. As much as I would like to relegate these acts of insanity to the most remote and disconnected members of our society, it is becoming more evident that the the crazies are present even to the level of our Republican representatives. Yelling inflammatory slurs on the floor of the house at both other US congressmen and the president himself. In the face of this unprecedented behavior I have only one conclusion to make of our democratic congressmen as they push forward with this bill, they are true American heroes.

Though they are afraid of where this vote will put them; in the face of political suicide and even death threats, they stand up for something they believe is more important than even their careers. Voting for this bill has brought about mania in the conservative right, and the republicans are using every inch they can get to wrench control from the democrats in the upcoming elections. In spite of the danger to their future and their person they have come together and brought life to so many who desperately seek it. As this bill passes, I see relief on the face of a friend who was on the verge of ending her marriage to qualify for medicaid because until now she was uninsurable. For so many this means hope for life, and for so many more hope for a better life.

To those who supported this bill and brought it to us in the face of unnatural opposition, I salute you. The real American heroes. Thank you for all you have done for us.

Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,