Greg Knauss after a family medical scare coinciding with the Republican National Convention:
The [Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act] is important. It’s vital. When a bug can bring down your family, when there are people who are willing to take away the shield that could prevent that, when we as a country have become so small and stingy and mean that we cheer the idea of ripping medical care away from fellow citizens, offering nothing in its place but sanctimony and self-rightenousness… What are we? We’re not a country. We’re not a community.
The Affordable Care Act isn’t even close to perfect, but it’s a major improvement to our national healthcare disaster, and Congress would never have passed anything better anytime soon. (It’s remarkable that they even passed that.)
At some point, the United States will offer a public option. And at some point after that, we will effectively get federally funded universal health care. We’re getting bits and pieces, starting with children and the elderly, but it’s slowly spreading.
Like racial, gender, and sexual-orientation discrimination, the direction we’re going over time is obvious, although we’re moving too slowly for many people (or too quickly, if you’re on the “conservative” side of these issues).
And like those other cultural progressions, it’s going to be a messy transition, and a lot of people continue to get hurt in the meantime. When the progession is mostly complete (because they’re rarely truly complete), our society will look back on this time in disbelief that we could be so callous and vicious toward one another regarding such a basic human need. I just hope we can be among those looking back, not just our grandchildren.
Greg Knauss’ family dodged a financial bullet this time. But a lot of people haven’t been, and won’t be, so lucky. And it could happen to any of us. Even if you think you have good insurance.