I learned this week that a friend who has been suffering with what seemed to be a pulled muscle actually has lung cancer. He is a talented computer techie who lost his wife to cancer a few years ago, has been unemployed since last fall, and has no health insurance -- already losing his house and surviving on odd jobs, now this. Another friend, a fifty-something divorced mother, is gambling on her health with no insurance, can't afford preventive exams. A cousin is fighting for her life against another recurrence of cancer, unable to work because of it and out of insurance coverage. Hard-working American-born citizens all. When my own husband lost his short battle with cancer in 2000, the 'leftover' bills bankrupted me even though we did have health insurance. Chances are, someone among your family and friends has a similar tale.
The health care system in this country has failed, and must be changed. We simply must find a way around the rhetoric and angry words that are swirling around the current debate for reform. No matter what your politics, please take a moment to read this, then listen to the eloquent plea below, and find a way to support meaningful change. It is literally a matter of life and death - and YOU could be the next in need.