Opportunity isn’t enough. Justice and fairness require a level playing field for everyone.
Why am I talking about this? I read that the language of the new health care act talks about “opportunity”. Meanwhile, a new independent study confirms today that 14 million people will go without healthcare, and even more in the future. This is not a better system.
I am not arguing for the ACA or for the new health care act. I am arguing that when we use language that promises opportunity, it isn’t enough for fairness.
Isn’t it strange that America is known as the land of opportunity? What does opportunity mean? Does it just mean that if you are wealthy enough you can become president? Or rather does it mean that no matter what your economic level, you have a chance at a life of improvement and growth?
Opportunity is the threshold but what is required is the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Article 25 states:
(1) Everyone has the right to a standard of living adequate for the health and well-being of himself and of his family, including food, clothing, housing and medical care, and necessary social services, and the right to security in the event of unemployment, sickness, disability, widowhood, old age or other lack of livelihood in circumstances beyond his control.
The United States was once at the forefront of individual rights and responsibilities. What has happened to us as a nation? Why are we giving up that great and awesome goal of equality and equal treatment under the law? Is any political party really worth allegiance when the result is that so many will suffer and die?
Yes, I know too many people life is something where some people win and some people die. If we start down that road, how quickly do we become the “dead weight” in that kind of thinking?
The opportunity for health care and human rights is not enough. It has to be a guarantee or it is meaningless.