What a sad week this was. Yes I am referring to the health care bill passing. But my sadness is not the result of the bill passing, but of the scary and ugly rhetoric that came right before and right after.
I have said my piece about the need for reform so I am not going to go there. But I am really angry about hearing of the emails, phone calls and acts that crossed the line.
It is one thing to voice your opinion and disagree with each other, but you try to hurt or threaten the lives of individuals and their families because they are on the opposite side of an issue than you are wrong.
It is worrisome enough to think these threats may just be from someone on the fringe. However hearing a popular pundit spewing that degree of hate on TV sent a chill down my spine I still haven't shook.
"We need to wipe them out. Defeat the Democrats, every one of them that voted for this bill," screeched Rush Limbaugh right after the vote was recorded.
Now he may have just been referring to voting them out of office, but most of us know that a very common use of the phrase "wipe out" means kill. Knowing there are those out there right now just waiting for the right signal to act, using words like that are dangerous to say the least.
Yeah I may be over reacting a bit. I really hope everyone took it as vote out and not kill them, but I am not convinced there are not some who are taking it that way.
I have spent much column space writing about finding ways to work together. For a long time I really felt like most of us on both sides of the political fence have many common needs, interests and moral values. I hope I am not wrong on that.
But as the extreme right seems to be louder and louder than ever, I begin to doubt where we are headed as a country.
We already are required to pay a medical tax and are penalized when we try to circumvent this. From each check you earn you have Medicare deductions.
If you think that is going into some little account with your name on it, think again. You are buying the care for those that use it now. People who don't even need it are signed up automatically.
This has been in place for decades and is used willingly by Democrats and Republicans equally. Our country yet.
"Repeal and replace!" is the current mantra.
Just suck it up and band together and lets use this as a starting point to make life work for everyone.
It is time to quit scaring people so bad they are ready to kill because those who are trying to do something positive are villianized by their opponents.
You may see issues with what has been done, but it has been done. For many it feels easier to be angry than to be a positive force for change.
If you don't like things then put forth a solution! Do not waste our time bitching and moaning - really do something and I don't mean send a threatening emails or letters.
Write a constructive letter that out lines what you need in health care reform. Vote! Attend meetings to form change, not just attend rallies to rail against what you see is wrong.
Normally a voice for moderation, I had to let this out. I have let my anger get to me a bit. I don't know that I feel much better after this, but I said what I had to say.