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.


Thursday, January 31, 2008

Desperate Times Call for Desperate Measures

I believe that the American people have forgotten that they can truly create change.

I wondered recently, quite publically, why no one seems to have heard of HR 676, which I discussed in my most recent post. I have also wondered, more privately, what would happen if people DID know about HR 676, and as a result of that knowledge, began calling and writing their representatives voicing their support? I’ve wondered about the many families I’ve met that are literally crippled by the current health care situation in the United States, and more concisely, their lack of appropriate and affordable health care. I’ve wondered if they know about HR 676. Even if they do know, would they know what they can do to support this bill?

I’ve touched a lot recently on health care/coverage, and the elitism in the United States. I’ve discussed Human Rights, and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights created and published in 1948, which stated in no uncertain terms that medical care is a basic human right.

I’m tired of just writing about this, and I have decided that it is time to take action. But what can I do that I am not already doing? I write my legislators, I make myself a big pain in the ass, and seriously (although I’m not officially declared this) my coworkers have not a clue what to do with the one “Greenie” among them.

So what am I going to do that is different from what I’ve already been doing?

I am going to assume that people just don’t know about HR 676. I am going to start leaving copies of this bill in places that I visit throughout my day. For instance, this afternoon I am visiting my endocrinologist office for training on my MiniLink. While perusing the waiting room, out of my bag I shall pull my 27 page HR 676 document and leave it promptly on a table with all the other magazines, where it surely will be seen. Perhaps it will even be picked up. And should it be picked up, I imagine that most patients in an endocrinologist office might be interested in what it has to say.

I am not just going to do this today; I am going to do this every day, once per day. I haven’t set a date that I intend to stop inconspicuously informing the public masses. Perhaps I will stop distributing HR 676 when it is passed into law, or conversely when it is defeated in the House. Either way, I believe I have found a fabulous way to share the “goings-ons” that perhaps the media, due to some “big-money” interest or another, have found undesirable to share with the general public.

As an afterthought, perhaps you would care to join me in my campaign? Go here and print your own copy. Leave it anywhere you think people may find it!


The Sick Chick said...

PLease correct me if I am wrong, but the way I read it this bill has been passed to committee, it is not "on the floor" in the HR as yet. Which would mean that unless your rep was in one of those committees, calling them is of little use at this stage...what needs to be done is to contact bill sponsors to register support and committee members to urge voting for it to get it out to a House vote...

Sarah said...

The Sick Chick, you are right that this bill is still in committee. Which means it isn't even certain that it will make it to the floor. Your idea is wonderful, that being said, there is no harm whatsoever in contacting all of our representatives in addition to the representatives on the committee voicing our support of this bill (and the need for universal coverage). The more support that is voiced the better. I disagree in your contention that calling a representative that is not on the committee is useless. I believe the more that we share with our representatives our desires, needs, and experiences the better. It is, however, extremely important to do, also, what you have suggested, which is to contact the bill sponsors to register support and committee members to urge voting for it to get it out on the House floor.

The Sick Chick said...

My experience with my rep is that they will forget what I have said by the time the bill finally comes to vote :( It's better to send messages to the committee (even if you don't have a rep there, they will listen to everyone) and CC your rep. Then when it's on the floor *definitely* contact your reps or anyone else you want :)

(My rep wrote me a really nice, personal letter in response to my contacting him about a bill and then had forgotten all about it by the time the bill came to a vote over a year later :( I reminded him ;) )

I'm not saying that contacting your reps now will hurt, just that more effort should go into getting it out of committee! :)

Sarah said...

Sick Chick,
I do agree with contacting the Committee Members, as that is important. Speaking of reps, one of my reps (not in my district but in a neighboring district who gets lots of letters from me) sent me a handwritten christmas card. He told me he wanted to be sure that he sent me off a card, seeing as I have sent him many many letters. It was a very nice surprise, and I have it "somewhere" but not quite sure where!

The Sick Chick said...

That's very cool :)

BTW when you print up copies of the bill to hand out, maybe make some tear-off bits on the last page with a list of whom to contact or website with more info? That way people who see it can take something with them to remind them to DO something.

(I'll be posting in my blog soon too.)

Bad Decision Maker said...

hey, I'm right there with you on universal single-payer. I'm a little cynical - there's SO MUCH $$ from insurance companies, big pharma, etc. involved with our congresspeople. I think it's that more than people not knowing (or maybe they don't know BECAUSE of that insurance company $$). But it is important to keep fighting.