For those who have worked for decades, longed with our forebears even longer, and still pay close attention to see a real public debate about United States health care, it has been a heart rattling ride. We have soared from the heights of joyous hope to valleys of deep despair. This debate is not really new, except in scope. Finally, in the 2012 national political races, common folk for all states, political persuasions, economic classes, and religious conviction will choose. We will show where our real values, our hearts lie.
Individual physical and mental health, public health, and imperfect systems of health care are complicated. To delay choice because it’s complicated, begs important questions. Why have nearly all educated, industrial societies surpassed us in key health measures? Why could our cultural predecessors of the United Kingdom vote in National Health Service at the same time their cities and economies were devastated following World War II? Why have numerous political attempts at reform since President Nixon’s private insurance approach, until 2010, been repeatedly defeated?
While these questions plead for answers, the political posturing by one current presidential candidate goes to the heart of the matter. Why does the former governor, who worked across the aisle to establish private based Romneycare in Massachusetts, oppose Obama care for all 50 states and most common folk? It does not take a Ph.D. in psychology, sociology, or political science to understand why. Candidate Romney treasures political success and power. What we humans most value is what our hearts treasure. On Nov. 6th, United States voters will declare their treasure: either political power for a few or access to health care for all. Common folks are the heart, the very life, of our fledgling republic and on-going experiment in democracy.
Our very national foundation is built on healthy and educated citizens. I think assuring such for our children, all of our children living and growing in our republic — and not just those with means and social standing — is our basic treasure. Bringing such values to real action needs the vote of all eligible voters this year. I think all of us count, you count, and so does your vote.
Dr. George W. Brown