National Debate Rages, Americans talk of how to best deal with healthcare situation.

Bob Corker conducted a town hall meeting at the Stones River Country Club on the morning of Wednesday, Aug. 26, to discuss the new proposed legislation concerning healthcare.
The crowd was made up largely of Republicans who seemed to agree with the senator. There was uproarious applause when he took the stage as well as when he voiced his opposition to the current bill, although he did state that he believes healthcare is need of serious reform.
“I’ve been amazed at how audiences across this state have known pages, lines and words of healthcare bills,” said Corker about recent town hall meetings.
The issue affects everyone, and many have done their homework and searched out the bill and formed their own ideas on the issue. The town hall meetings truly are people coming face to face with their representative and getting an opportunity to let them know exactly how they feel. Although everyone may not get the chance to hold the microphone, the applause and grumbles make the group ideas easy to interpret.
“We literally have a socialist in the White House. Socialism didn’t work in Jamestown 400 years ago and it is not going to work now,” said a man named George sitting at the town hall meeting.
“I support a public option where I can come together with other people and get good coverage for a good price,” said a young woman. “To say that a government option will stomp all over competition is not logical.”
The woman then used the example of the coexistence of state schools such as MTSU with a private school like Vanderbilt. Both thrive even though one is publicly funded and the other is not.
These meetings are comprised of extremists on both sides, but most who attend are at least willing to listen to opposing views. Through all the conversations, concerns and even shouting matches, the two sides seem to better understand the constituents most affected by this bill.
The Democrats realized that universal healthcare is too large a pill to swallow for some and this may not be the right time to push such an ambitious program, while Republicans have come face to face with real Americans who struggle in the current system and have come to realize the system is broken.
Through all of this has come a new set of ideas that encompass the compromises of both sides. The main goals are still intact, but the means and methods to get there have changed. President Obama presented the new ideas in a televised speech on Sept. 9.
“I am not the first president to take up this cause, but I am determined to be the last,” Obama said early in his speech.
He feels this is an issue that has been pushed back year after year and term after term and that the only time to act is now; waiting would be detrimental.
“Since healthcare represents one-sixth of our economy, I believe it makes more sense to build on what works and fix what doesn’t, rather than try to build an entirely new system from scratch,” said the President.
If a system the size of healthcare is broken then fixing it would only help fix the greater economic problem.
This new plan will allow those with insurance through Medicare, Medicaid their job or VA to continue life as normal. Those people will not have to change their plans, doctors or their way of dealing with medical issues.
It will also provide for an insurance exchange where small businesses and individuals will be able to shop for insurance at competitive prices. There will also be a government option for those that are unable to find coverage on their own. Though this government option will not be mandatory for anyone. It will simply be offered alongside the private insurance companies.
There will be new restrictions on insurance companies to make sure they cannot cut benefits because of unfavorable circumstances. This is to make sure that people come before the dollar at these insurance companies. All insurance companies that wish to be a part of the insurance exchange market must abide by these new consumer protections.
This plan will also make basic health insurance a legal requirement in the United States. Those with health insurance are paying extra in premiums because of the burden the uninsured put on the health care industry. If everyone were insured that would reduce those premiums.
This is a forward thinking plan, for future generations as much as Social Security was set up for future generations when it was introduced in the 1930s.
There is an old Native American quote that says, “We don’t inherit the land from our ancestors, we borrow it from our children.” This is the rationale of the effort to amend the healthcare system. We are setting up a system that we as Americans should be proud of and that we can show to the world. A new system that our children and hopefully their children can live happily and healthy under. Something America and all Americans can be proud of.


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