Prescription for Health Care Reform: Read the Bill, Tell the Truth
by Murdock "Doc" Gibbs (bio)
If you're a supporter of President Obama, I beg of you to please ask your representatives to start speaking the truth and quit smearing sincere Americans.
We've already seen "tea party" activists pooh-poohed and marginalized. They've even been called racists. They are just concerned citizens - concerned like our patriotic founders about high taxation and unresponsive government.
Likewise, recent health care reform-related protests at town hall meetings across America are not the organized, subsidized "mobs" they are being portrayed as by many reports. They are moms, dads, veterans, college students, plumbers, painters, senior citizens and other Americans who - unlike most members of Congress - are actually reading the health care bill and finding some disturbing elements in its 1,000-plus pages.
These Americans simply disagree with the Obama Administration's assessment of the issue and the urgency to pass legislation that could send America into bankruptcy, diminish the quality of health care and inch us closer to socialism.
The vilification of opponents of the Obama health reform plan must end. Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), for instance, says the protesting at town hall meetings are false grassroots - "astroturf." Senator Barbara Boxer (D-CA) says the protestors are dressed too nicely - and that is proof they must be hired by Republicans or insurance companies.
The White House even wanted people to report "fishy" information (or misinformation as it is called) to a government web site. Oh yes, don't forget to give the name, address and other pertinent data about the source of this "fishy" information. They claimed this wouldn't turn into an official "enemies list," but disabled the address after days of bad press.
And where is the civility and fairness in sending union members to town hall meetings for the express purpose of crowding out those who disagree with the bill? What about reports that union members in Missouri even beat up a black guy, using racial slurs against him and sending him to the hospital?
This wasn't cops and a black Harvard professor, just was a few union thugs who "acted stupidly."
Is the strategy to muscle the bill through Congress, sneak it through, slip it through, rush it through or whatever without allowing the light of examination to check it out?
It's time for the Obama Administration and its supporters face the music: its words, its trillion-dollar bills and its spend-spend-spend ideas are causing discontent. Tax-us-more dictates are not Gospel. They didn't come down from the mountaintop with Moses!
Try this one on: some - maybe most - Americans don't agree with the White House's economic formulas. Furthermore, these voices of informed dissent will not be silenced even in the face of congressional name-calling, media bias and even bullying from the President. After all, it was Obama who said: "I don't want the folks who created the mess to do a lot of talking. I want them to just get out of the way."
Not everybody likes the Obama health care reform agenda. This isn't a bad thing - it's a simple indicator that we live in a democracy. President Obama and other elected leaders need to remember this, and they need to listen to these people.
After all, some of them have even read the bill.
# # #
Murdock "Doc" Gibbs, a member of the national advisory council of the Project 21 black leadership network, is an entertainer and public speaker from Coppell, Texas. Comments may be sent to [email protected].
Published by The National Center for Public Policy Research. Reprints
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