Honing in which lives matter

May 10, 2008 at 11:52 AM (Uncategorized) (, , , )

For my US readers:

Since May has been a challenging month for my asthma, it got me thinking about breathing.

Maybe if we narrow the debate down a bit it will start to make sense.

For the sake of this intellectuall excersize, let’s say the only illness or impairment anyone ever got was gradually worsening asthma.

Breathing is the first, most basic human need. I also believe it is a human right. When we can do it, we live. When there’s some trouble doing it it can endanger us quite quickly. (Roomate can go from zero to cyanotic in about two minutes. Scary stuff)

I doubt any opponent of universal access, or even the opponents of single payor would ever say, or even believe that because someone comes down with asthma, they don’t have a right to immediate professional healthcare to handle that, regardless of the economic status of said person with asthma.

Asthma is not something that people acquire because they make “bad” choices. (Making said bad choices can *worsen it* but it doesn’t arrive solely on the basis of lifestyle, so the following argument is out the door (“I don[t believe in universal healthcare because it would mean I have to fork over bucks for someone else’s lousy lifestyle choices”.)

The ideological argument “That’s socialism,” makes me want to scream. So, the *perception* of government funded care being, instead of something that would provide access, but rather a tool, wedded to an ideology, avoiding a *single state run thing* is more important than a loved one getting care when necessary *whether that loved one is rich and employed or poor and/or not employed? They don’t get to continue *breathing* unless they have a job? and or a stack of cash? Sloppy thinking.

Now, we have economic rationing.

(Please tell the Republican folk loudly: “Rationed care” is here *right now.* not some boogeyman that will only show up when we cease to be American {snark} and adopt single payor.) Then, we’d have rationing as intrinsic to the system. Both suck. And yes, I don’t know how to fix it.

Also, and this one I’ve written about before….but drives me nuts.

The people who believe life begins at conception. I’m not telling anyone not to believe that. The belief is there and many believe it. This post is not about arguing that point.

If you believe that conception begins a human being, then *after it is born,* you are committing to attempt to medically assist and educate that life so that it may grow up to fend for itself. That it may eventually be able to *pay for* its own food clothing and shelter. (and you hope, obviously, it’s own health care.)

But if life-as-of-conception is de facto both protected and sacred…when and where does your belief system state that you suddenly have no responsibility for that life? That that life becomes “not your problem” if it cannot be self supporting? Is it only the people that spiral out of control with obviously self destructive behavior and nothing else? A road that from the outside has obvious places where that life could have quit ****ing around and gotten itself together, but did not?

Or is it more? Does the “life is sacred” option stop at a certain economic level? Do you honestly believe that “life is sacred and should be protected at all costs as long as it is not poor enough to need state aid, and that once it needs that help it is no longer sacred to be protected at all costs.

I really want to know.

Does it extend to all ethnic and religious groups? “Life as of conception is sacred. and should be protected at all costs” Where in your belief system does it specifically say “Only the lives I’m comfortable with are sacred and should be protected at all costs? ”

Or, is life-as-of-conception suddenly not sacred, when it becomes apparent that that life is complex and different because of impairment or condition or chronic illness and may only partially support itself for a time or never be “self supporting” at all. Or, if it was self supporting and then it’s trajectory altered off the self supporting track by impairment.

Or if your belief says “life as of conception is de facto protected and sacred,” are there actually some lives that cost too much?

Are there lives that fall outside the ‘sacred and must be protected at all costs’ phrase if those living those lives live them out in ways that that disturb you?

When do all these variances *stop* being “sacred enough” to accommodate, teach, treat, house, clothe or feed?

If you believe that life is sacred and begins at conception, I submit to you that that belief, *as well as to it’s opponent* demands such detailed examination.


1 Comment

  1. Which lives matter? « My Beautiful Wickedness said,

    […] new memorial to the disabled victims of the Nazis and a blog post by imfunnytoo. She poses some tough questions about which lives matter to us and […]

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