Sunday, August 9, 2009

The Silent Majority-Shades of "High Noon"

Barack Obama won his bid for the presidency by a substantial margin. The night his election was announced massive crowds gathered in Grant Park, Chicago, IL to celebrate the victory. Several months later, the inaugral crowds were huge, despite the frigid weather in Washington, D. C. History in the making was the watch word.

The new president set about the task of unravelling the myriad of problems he inherited: the economy, massive job losses, the possible catostraphic failure of the financial system and the end of the U. S. Auto Industry to name just a few. Let's not forget the two wars the country was waging in Iraq and Afghanistan. As he tackled the enormous challenges facing America, his supporters watched and wondered.
When will he get to my pet issue, my pressing cause, my pet peeve, my problems and worries. The supportive crowd seemed to fade into the distance, while the oppositions capitalized on the country's fears and insecurities spewing poisoned criticism at every turn. What ever the issue, they just said "NO".

Now the biggest issue on the nation's table is health care reform, one of the central planks in Obama's platform. While the country rally for "Change we can believe in" during the campaign, Obama supporters seem to have faded into the sunset as time get tough and then tougher. It reminds me of the old Western "High Noon" with Gary Cooper and Grace Kelly. When it came time to face the bad guys, the men remembered their families and their crops and every other thing that would prevent them from standing with our hero in this fight to the finish. They tucked their tails between their legs and slinked into the darkness.

We keep hearing from the nay sayers and the critics and any one else who wants to maintain the status quo. We worry that we may have to pay more or that we might not be able to choose our doctor and that the government would make decisions about who will live and who will die. We scream "Don't touch my Medicare." We forget that Medicare, the Veterans Administration health care program and the congressional health package are precious, valued health care systems for so many of our citizens. Yet, we fear government involvement in administering a health care program.

This country has been talking about reforming health care for 60 years and still can't make it happen. Congressman Dent says "This will be Obama's Waterloo." He expects the president to fail. Barack says he has an excellent health plan as do the members of the Legislative Branch. He reminds us that it's not about's about us (the people of the United States). This is our best chance to reform health care, if we keep our heads, sift through all the misinformation and if we support the president and make our wishes know. We've got to get out there, fight lies with truth, and set the record straight.

Passing comprehensive health insurance reform will not be easy. Every President since Harry Truman has talked about it, and the most powerful and experienced lobbyists in Washington stand in the way.

But every day we don't act, Americans watch their premiums rise three times faster than wages, small businesses and families are pushed towards bankruptcy, and 14,000 people lose their coverage entirely. The cost of inaction is simply too much for the people of this nation to bear. There comes a moment when we all have to choose between doing what's easy, and doing what's right.

This is one of those times. And moments like this are what this movement was built for. So, are you ready?

Please commit now to taking at least one action in your community this month to build support for health insurance reform. Don't keep your support for the POTUS a secret. Let's show our president that he is not alone.

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