An elegy for health reform


Folks, watching good ideas come and go on The Hill, and feeling a bit despairing about the prospects for constructive change, I'm just about speechless. Instead of intellectual analysis, today I give you this elegy for health reform, respectfully borrowed from a much sadder speech by Protestant pastor and social activist Martin Niemoller:

When legislators cut out the immigrants,
I remained silent;
I was not an immigrant.

When they killed the public option,
I remained silent;
I already had health insurance.

When they cut Medicare,
I did not speak out;
I was not a senior citizen.

When they abandoned the middle class,
I remained silent;
I wasn't out of money.

Then, when I lost my health insurance,
there was nowhere for me to turn.

Let's hope that private interest groups remember the lessons of Niemoller's speech and work for the common good. Otherwise, it seems likely that all of our health reform efforts, time, and worst of all, hopes will have been wasted. - Anne

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