Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Health Reform Is About People

For all too many of us, discussions on health reform are about how much it will cost along with arguments over political ideology. It’s all too easy to forget about the human suffering that is happening under our noses.

Recently, Rich Stockwell, Senior Producer for the MSNBC show Countdown came up with an idea to set up some free clinics in the states that are the home of conservative Democratic senators who have been opposing health care reform. The idea was to demonstrate how much of a need there was to help the people in these states and perhaps shame these senators into finally supporting health care reform.

Thanks to Countdown along with donations from viewers across the country, the first free clinic was held this Saturday in New Orleans. Senator Mary Landrieu (D-LA) among those opposing reform was invited to attend the clinic but declined.

But Mr. Stockwell did attend and wrote this account of what he saw,
Health Reform's Human Stories which Countdown host Keith Olbermann reads during a video shown of the event. Please check out the compelling video in this link.

It is hard to sum it up better than Stockwell when he wrote of his experience:

Health reform is not about Democrats or Republicans or who can score political points for the next election, it's about people. It's about fairness and justice in a system that knows none. I'd defy even the most hardened capitalist-loving-conservative to do what I did on Saturday and continue to pretend that the system in place right now is working.

I am left with one overwhelming question: what does it say about us as a nation of people who can live in a country so rich and yet allow this to continue?

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