Saturday, August 29, 2009

POLITICS: WWJD about Health Care?

Among the contentious, TV-friendly images we've seen this past month from health care town halls across the country, a few have stood out the most to me — probably because of what's revealed by the protesters in the clips and probably because some of the clips have been in cable news rotation like Top 10 summer singles.

Perhaps you'll recall this chart-climber from August 11th during an Arlen Specter town hall meeting in Lebanon, Pennsylvania (the protestor has his crazy say from about :45 seconds into the clip through the 2 minute mark):

Really? This guy's threatening Specter and all his "damn cronies" with God's judgment because they're talking about trying to provide health care for all Americans?

O.K. So what would Jesus do?

Luke 9:1-3
[1] When Jesus had called the Twelve together, he gave them power and authority to drive out all demons and to cure diseases, [2] and he sent them out to preach the kingdom of God and to heal the sick. [3] He told them: "Take nothing for the journey -- no staff, no bag, no bread, no money, no extra tunic."

WHAT? No extra tunic? Jesus apparently wasn't yet aware of all the benefits and care-giving bounty of the health insurance companies. He lived in backwoods Nazareth, a podunk burg in the Roman Empire. He'd have had to travel to somewhere like Ancient Yemen, "the Insurance Capital of Arabia," to learn how the sick should be treated in a free society. Jesus was a simple man, a homebody really, who chose to stay with his people and help the least of his brothers and sisters. It was the least he could do, right?

I've heard and read a number of citizens invoke Jesus' name in their diatribes against providing health care for all Americans, which continues to baffle me. It's sometimes invoked as having something to do with freedom and the Constitution, which makes no sense at all – Jesus had quite a few rules to impart to his flock, and he gave stern warnings that if they didn't do as he said, it was the eternal hot box for them. Not much of a Constitutional kinda guy, really.

But think about it: if Jesus did come back to earth, do you really think he'd be strapping a gun to his thigh and fighting for the rights of insurance companies to jack up premiums, deny patients' coverage, and make obscene profits at the expense of the sick and diseased?

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