The unrelenting shock and grief that we all share on experiencing the tragic loss of 5000 lives seems like it will never end. In a few brief moments we saw unveiled a tragedy of unfathomable proportions. People in the prime of their lives… so wrong… so terribly wrong.
The entire nation now wants to do the right thing, even if we may still be confused as to what that is. One thing that we do know is that we must pick ourselves up and move forward. We agree that no evil force can be allowed to weaken our spirit and resolve. We must continue.
The high visibility and abruptness of the tragedy shocked all Americans and brought immediate responses in support of our leadership. We want the right things done, and as soon as possible. Much more insidious and much less visible is the infinitely greater premature loss of life and suffering that is wrought simply by the ineffectiveness of our health care system in properly allocating our abundant resources. The premature death and impaired quality of life that continues to occur is diffused over time and space, and it does not create isolated images that can be broadcast instantaneously over every network simultaneously. But these tragedies are just as real, and they are much greater in the sheer numbers of lives affected. Simply because of the lack of an instantaneous media presence, these tragedies fail to provoke the outrage that Americans would demonstrate if they only understood. So endless suffering and premature death continue. So wrong… so terribly wrong. That is why we must continue to speak out on issues of health care injustice. We must right this terrible wrong.
Quote of the Day
Families USA Press Room
September 12, 2001
“Most tax-credit proposals for the purchase of individual health coverage by low-wage workers, such as the President’s proposal, provide annual tax credits approximating $1,000 per year. But, according to the report, the average premiums for a standard health plan in the 25 states (studied) for healthy, non-smoking women ages 55 and 25 are $4,734 and $2,395, respectively. Health insurance for unhealthy and/or smoking women would be much higher or would be unavailable, according to the report.”
Ron Pollack, executive director of Families USA:
“The costs of individual health insurance are far more expensive than the cash value of pending tax-credit proposals. They are like a 10-foot rope thrown to a person at the bottom of a 40-foot hole. As a result, low-wage, uninsured workers across America will either find health premiums unaffordable or will only be able to buy Swiss cheese-type policies that have more holes than cheese.”