The last wealthy nation in the First World without some kind of national health care is about to get a watered down version of what other nations just assume is the mark of a successful and developed society. And the vested interests — big medicine, insurance companies, and the politicians they employ — are screaming like mad and spending a fortune to stop it. Ads and campaigns of confusion are not directed at my state, but at poorer and less educated states where affordable health care is needed most and people are easiest to frighten and manipulate. (In my state, libraries can direct people to information to understand the new law. In many states, librarians are actually forbidden to provide this service.)
It’s amazing to me that in our great nation, about a fifth of the citizens are unable to afford health insurance, need to go to the emergency room for routine medical needs, and are terrorized by the specter of one serious accident or sickness wiping out their family financially. And, just as amazing, half of our country thinks that’s ok and is fighting mad about the possibility of change. Even more perplexing, many of the people who think this is the best America can afford are the very people who need help the most.