Health care is a basic human right, not a privilege. For some reason, we’ve allowed ourselves as Americans to be fooled into accepting that one must be blessed with “means” to actuate appropriate health care. As a nation we have failed to realize that our health care system is a barometer of our society’s value for human life.

-Me

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Caucus Events & the American Dream

I attended my first caucus yesterday, DFL caucus to be sure.

I walked away in a bit of a daze, appointed as the new Precinct Associate Chair and buzzing a bit, also, over the 26-8 Obama tally in my precinct. I was also a bit abuzz about the two resolutions passed in my precinct, with absolutely no opposition, in support of comprehensive, universal, and in one instance single payer health coverage for all Minnesotans.

Wow.

I find myself wondering how exactly I managed to take on one more task (intriguing as it is) and then conversely wondering why exactly I stayed “inactive” politically and in the community for so long prior to this year.

There have been events in my life which have led me to this path, primarily my family. As time wears on, my political and community focus seems more and more clear. I have developed personal stances on health care, poverty, community voices, disability policy, and so much more.

At first it seemed that my focus would be only special education and disability issues, but somehow my scope has broadened. I believe that my personal experiences only make my focus more valid.

Soon after I began Partners in Policymaking I resolved to have no fear of, nor shame in regards to, my past. Yes, I was in treatment for substance abuse. Yes, during this time period my children were in foster care and I was involved with child protective services. I completed treatment. I spent 90 days in a halfway house. I moved to Saint Cloud with no furniture, no means, financially and spiritually broken. I have been a broken spirit navigating a broken social system intended to help, but in actuality perpetuates the failures that drive its services.

Slowly, and through grace and personal persistence, I have been able to rebuild my family, myself, my home, and my spirit. I have a small degree of personal success. There is order in my home, compassion in my heart, and smiles in my children’s eyes (and on their faces). I wonder why my story is unique. Success, although limited, is not necessarily encouraged in our society….and failure is used to quiet the social masses.

We are all human, and we all have basic human rights. I regularly meet low-income, poor, and broken individuals and families. They are stuck in a system that is content to leave them broken, and does not encourage healing.

This is why I support universal health care under a single payer system. I support equity in health care, with receipt of such care recognized as a basic human right. I support equity and equal accessibility to higher education, housing, jobs, transportation, and healthy food. I support healthy communities with programs in place designed to help children and families succeed. I support programs that allow families on assistance to have things like savings accounts (with real money in them) because this breeds independence from welfare programs. I support back to work programs which do not include the “cliff” of loss of benefits when you begin a job.

These are my dreams for America.

What are yours?

(And while you are up and about blogsurfing, check this out.)

1 comment:

Sam I Am said...

Hey, thanks for stopping by today and for the nice comment. You are awesome in all the advocacy work that you do. Keep up your passions and lead with your heart!!!!!