July 4, 2012
In a Park Record guest editorial written several weeks ago, I made reference to the positives that the Affordable Health Care Act provides for all citizens. In addition, I encouraged all skeptics to further educate themselves by investigating various websites that attempt to give an objective opinion regarding the facts surrounding this highly emotional law.
Now that the Supreme Court has officially made a ruling on the constitutionality of the Affordable Health Care Act, most Americans remain as confused as ever. Politicians from both sides are even more entrenched to impose the will of their party’s ideology. That is why you and I must become more informed and sift through the political rhetoric to decide what is best for all Americans.
Strangely, the concept of an individual health-care insurance mandate is a Republican idea that originated at the conservative Heritage Foundation in 1989. Later, Republicans in Congress twice introduced health-care bills that contained an individual health-care mandate. Advocates of those bills at the time were Utah Senators Orrin Hatch and Robert Bennett. In 2007, both Democrats and Republicans introduced bipartisan bills containing the individual-mandate clause, but all were dismissed for a lack of committee support.
Setting politics aside, let us focus our full attention to what is best for all Americans. A perfect analogy to illustrate the individual-mandate concept is to use the auto industry. The risk of not having car insurance imposes a risk of delaying auto care for the individual when needed. It also may impose costs to others because we as a society provide care for the uninsured. The risk of shifting costs to others has eventually mandated that all drivers have at least liability insurance coverage. The basic premise simply is, in an effort to keep car insurance costs down for the consumer, the more drivers who are insured, the more revenue is available for those in need. The result is better coverage at less cost to each individual policy holder. Obviously, the same logic could be applied to the Affordable Health Care Act. The more citizens paying for health-care insurance, the results are more revenue available for those who are truly in need.
The old saying, "Don’t throw out the baby with the bath water," can be applied to our present congressional leaders, many of whom are pledging their efforts to repeal "Obamacare" once they are in office after the November elections. As in most cases, laws and acts of this magnitude are not perfect from their origin. Time is needed to see if there are any unknown injustices in the law. Many times, refinement of the law is needed in order for the law to work for the betterment of society. Surely, now that the Affordable Health Care Act has been declared constitutional, both parties can work together without destroying something that has been long in coming and is inherently good for all young and old citizens alike in America.