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3.18.2010

Abortion and Universal Health Care

It's annoying to me when people talk negatively about the idea of universal health care in the United States. People complain that their health care quality will go down. The people complaining most likely have health care, which under the new bill, I'm pretty sure they would be able to keep! Why are they complaining? Do you not understand that some people don't have the luxury of health care? Many jobs don't automatically give it to you, and it's incredibly expensive to buy it independently if you have a $10/hour job (which is significantly above minimum wage). The idea of universal health care gives many people hope that they won't have to decide between food on the table or taking their child to the doctor when s/he is sick. Many of those complaining about this are privileged people who have NO idea what life is like for people who are not at the same standard of living as they are.

Christians want to complain about it, but these same people won't do a thing to provide health care and assistance for the people who can't afford it. Maybe churches will help out once or twice, but after that they close their wallets. What if people are unable to get out of the financial situation that they are in and need help for a couple years, or maybe all of their lives? Is the church continually willing to give? Or do they stop after a few times because people aren't "pulling themselves up by their boot straps"?

This helps me to better understand the abortion debate as well. Christians protest against it, but are totally unwilling to take teenage mothers under their wings- providing the money and stability that they need to have and raise a baby.

Many Christians give once or twice. But they rarely will make significant investments in people's lives...why is that? What can we do to change that?

9 comments:

Mrs. Haid said...

Whoah... someone has a strong opinion! I bet it is informed by your stay in Africa.

My opinion is informed by a "less govt is much better than more govt" libertarian philosophy.

Interesting!!

PS - My husband doesn't want to adopt internationally - He wants to adopt unaborted kids. I think that is neat.

Tiffany said...

Haha, yeah. I normally try to avoid political issues because I'm not the political type. I rarely vote so I rarely complain about political issues. However, I think I'm most concerned about the church's response to this issue and the lack of effort put forth effort to actually DO something about the issue. It's sad to me that the government has to take care of those those who are in need of food and health care and the church typically doesn't.

I think it's really cool that he wants to adopt domestically for that reason- how awesome! I hope you guys get to do that some day! :)

ash said...

Well of course I have an opinion. Just so you're aware, I'm politically apathetic and don't really care. BUT if I did, here is my two cents :)

I think the concern is the reaction of doctors and health-care providers upon changing to universal healthcare. I know my parents, who are Christians (dad), feels like he does a lot for his family and works really hard and so they are able to get the BEST health-care. And in the same respect, my job doesn't provide health-care and so he thinks its fine that I have to pay more and go to walk-in clinics, etc. That's a choice I've made.

My only question to you would be is there a point when we should challenge people to take personal responsibility?

Tiffany said...

Hey Ash! Thanks for the comments. Those are good points.

The biggest issue I'm talking about here is that I don't like it when people complain about it BECAUSE of their own fears of healthcare quality being lessened for them. I'm not really speaking to the other drawbacks of the whole idea of the health care plan.

I think we should encourage personal responsibility, but that we should continue to give until it hurts. Not everyone who is in need of this plan is "irresponsible." Some people don't have college educations or are called to areas like social work or teaching or ministry where they do not make enough to provide for themselves and their family. If a family of 4 have 2 working parents who are making minimum wage, they can still be on government assistance. Are they not trying hard enough? They may need assistance all of their lives.

As it stands, most churches do nothing. Maybe after families and churches start giving and sacrificing to take care of those around them, then personal responsibility would be a great dialogue to have with the people they're helping.

Charity said...

Dang, Tiff! I had to comment on this post. If this were the kind of message that I heard in Church I might be more inclined to spend time there. I've had a few conversations with friends lately about why I have distanced myself from the Church and these issues have definitely come up.

I have never been able to understand why the Church seemed to find it much easier to protest abortion than to provide for/support the terrified people that were facing a life-changing decision.

And as a health care provider and patient that saw a $40,000 health care bill one year (thankfully I worked for a huge health care organization - the best insurance around - and my specialty surgeon happened to be in-network) I'm convinced good health-care in this country is luxury. If I hadn't worked where I did having cancer would not only have been psychologically stressful, but also an economic disaster. I'm not saying I agree with all the aspects of the health care bill but every day I read my Christian friends' status updates on FB about how terrible the health care bill is; today someone was even comparing it to the second coming. Really? When did this become about ensuring that we have what we need with such disregard for our neighbors?

Thanks for your post.

Jeffrey Reese said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jeff R said...

There you go, stirring the pot! This is an issue that needs attention but with logical dialogue. Not the screaming matches that are actually taking place. Something definitely needs to be done about healthcare in this country. Private insurers continue to hike rates while covering less. I'm not one to limit business profits but we are talking about the well being of individuals...not the big electronics purchase they want to make. Hospitals are paying those same insurance costs to cover themselves from patient lawsuits thereby driving up individual payer costs. It is a vicious cycle.

Honestly, I think the church needs to start examining how they can best benefit those in need of medical work. Maybe that means several churches coming together (scary I know) and pooling funds to create their own medical operation. They will probably take a hit financially, struggling to break even, but the hope is church members would continue to step forward when finances become tight. Or what about a central church fund built into the budget that assists those needing medical costs addressed? Also, offering the option of low interest loans to those that need help but don't feel right about taking a handout. Then interest earned from the loan can go straight into the medical allocation set aside in the budget. Sort of a pay it forward approach. Insurance will continue to be a mess, but actually receiving healthcare and not bankrupting the individual in the process should never be up for debate. Abortion is the same way. Until they (church organizations) realize that passing a law will do no good but rather developing programs (for both prevention and during pregnancy) is the route to stopping abortions, then money is being wasted. It is easy to donate monetarily to large groups to advocate laws, but actually getting in and working with the people is hard work.

Very good post, and thank you for stepping out to bring these issues into conversation.

JR. said...

I would also add a hearty "Amen". Is this healthcare bill flawed? Of course it is... the government made it.

But I hear no compassion coming from many believers. I hear "work harder and you'll get healthcare". I'm thankful God doesn't treat us that way.

I hate that we've confused blessing with privilege. Good thoughts. I just wish more people were listening :)

Ariah said...

I'm getting to the conversation late, but just wanted to say, great post and great discussion.
Whether you like it or not, you can't really be "not the political type", can't be neutral on a moving train as they say. I'm glad your stirring the dialog