DailyKos, Obamacare, and Caleb Howe

Thursday, August 1st, 2013

twitter2011-2

So the Daily Kos kids are being their typical selves: piling on their ideological opposition during a time of trouble to score political points. Caleb Howe, a military veteran, wonderful writer, and friend has been going through some difficult times that have culminated in him being in critical condition in the hospital.

For a lefty who makes everything political, this was the response:

So of course you want to repeal Obamacare. And what the fuck is your apparent “solution”? A tin cup on your website?

He says this as though a tin cup is a bad thing. Charity is a good thing. It comes from people’s hearts. Caleb and his family know they are loved. Every donation (well, most) is a message of goodwill and kindness.

Unlike medicare, medicaid and now Obamacare, charity is less likely to be abused, overused, or overextended. Who wants to exploit their friend’s love? No one. Well, no decent person.

And no decent person would so enjoy the suffering of another person.

Since this has been made into a political discussion, it’s worthwhile to point out that conservatives believe in helping the truly needy. This is what Medicaid was for–not as a catchall insurance program for everyone.

Also, here’s what the hospital will do for Caleb or anyone in a similar situation: they’ll assess his ability to pay and then bill him a small amount each month until they forgive the debt or it’s paid off. I’ve known people who pay $5 a month. Most hospitals were/are have Christian and charitable missions.

That’s America. It’s not a perfect system, to be sure. And improvements to the health care system were needed, but to claim that Obamacare would make Caleb’s situation better and ignore the harm that’s already being done by the legislation, is just willful political exploitation.

Worse, than the political, though, is the personal. The coarsening of our interaction and dehumanization is the biggest loss. Money comes and goes but community bonds and compassion abide. Well, I’d like to think they do, anyway.

Giving a dollar out of spite so you can say something nasty to man who might die and saying it in a place where his wife, children, and extended family will read it, well. What it says about you trumps any political point you hoped to make.

******

Those raising money for Caleb are almost to $25,000. Please help if you can: Go Fund Me.

On a personal note, Caleb’s girls are dancers and quite good and that’s expensive. Having a dad who can’t work means losing opportunities. These donations will help them pursue their dreams while their dad gets well.

Wishing Caleb and his family wholeness and healing.