Thursday, October 3, 2013

This is as Un-American as it gets.

Yeah, it might be your park, but Republican leaders are throwing a tantrum. You shall not pass.

It's funny how the little things can be so irritating. Because of the government shutdown, I cannot take my students on a field studies class to one of the more stunning places in our country, Sequoia National Park. As a result, the communities near the park will not receive our business, and we will be traveling someplace else.

Irritating yes, but nothing like the uncertainty that our public servants, the park rangers, the FBI agents, the food inspectors, the diplomats, the people who are doing the necessary and important business of our country have to suffer at the hands of fools. So yes, this post is uncharacteristically angry, because I am very angry.

Congressional Republicans are a bunch of spoiled children conducting a public tantrum that is hurting millions of people. But don't expect them to ever understand that. They collectively seem incapable of empathy. And yes, in this description I am including my own representative, Jeff Denham.

I was taught civics and politics in high school. Elected representatives go to Washington and enact laws using specific processes that have served us well for more than 200 years. If political parties didn't like laws, they could be repealed. By a proper vote in both houses of Congress, and with the signature of the President. Usually we expect that our elected representatives understand how the political process works.

The Affordable Care Act will benefit millions of people. We've already let too many people die or go bankrupt because of health catastrophes in the absence of health insurance. We've been abused for years by health insurance companies acting as the dreaded "death panels" that Republicans keep trying to scare us with. The ACA will (and already has) provided coverage for millions without the caps and limits on pre-existing conditions. And millions will now pay less for health care. The law was passed by the duly elected members of Congress, and signed by the president. It was upheld by the Supreme Court, including the conservative Justice Roberts. It is the law of the land.

But because the spoiled children who pass as representatives of the Republican Party don't think that my children and my cousins and millions of others deserve health care, they've shut down the government, tossing hundreds of thousands out of work, and causing children and the elderly to go hungry. They've endangered all of us. All because they don't truly believe in democracy. The law was enacted. There was an election in which health care was a main issue. And they lost. Get over it, and get our country back to work. Extortion is ugly and morally wrong.

Comment if you wish, but this isn't a debate forum. Intelligent and well-considered objections only. If you decide to unthinkingly parrot Republican talking points, don't expect them last very long in the comments section.


Gaelyn said...

Thank you for speaking out. Let's keep this momentum going.

Lockwood said...

The thing that even more deeply concerns me is that they may approach the debt limit with the same flippancy. Essentially, we're seeing a three-year-old with a loaded automatic weapon, and we're nearly powerless to intervene.