Coming from an extremely conservative background, I shouldn't be surprised that so many of my friends are upset about the healthcare reform legislation that passed last night. I went to a Baptist college. I live in Mississippi. I'm hearing a lot of "end of the world" type of talk. A lot.
I shouldn't be surprised, but I am. Maybe it's because I tend to shy away from politics. This also is not surprising - my stepfather is one of the most militantly conservative Republicans I've ever come across, and pretty much the only tv allowed in our house was either a Sunday morning televised sermon or Fox News. My step-dad would despise my politics, if we were to talk about them. I avoid the subject as much as possible when I go home.
It's not the opposition to the healthcare bill that really surprises me. I understand the criticisms of the bill. It's the vehement way that my friends are saying that no good can come of this. No good? My part-time job does in fact offer a healthcare plan. The premiums are around $500 a month. The deductible is $5000 a year. We don't spend anywhere near $5000 on doctor visits a year right now.. we couldn't. We can't. I'm afraid all the time about what would happen if one of us were to be seriously ill. Eric had a bad sinus infection earlier this winter and we had to borrow money just so he could get antibiotics. What if it had been worse? What would we do? At least now we'll get an option.
I'll be the first to admit that I don't fully understand the healthcare bill. But you know what? I bet my friends don't either. I know that it's easy to idealize something you don't fully understand. But from the way I see it, it's easier to fear what we don't understand. Be hopeful and generous of spirit rather than fearful and suspicious. Politics are really irrelevant anyway.