The true face of the Tea Party. Remaining steadfast to their amazing propensity for supporting agonizingly tortured convolutions of logic, government can finance corporations to conduct endless war to protect our freedoms, sure. But when it comes to financing the protection of a hypothetical 30-year-old-man without expensive corporate health insurance in a coma, government should let him die. Now, I’m not saying that everyone in the Tea Party necessarily supports the two illegal and immoral wars that are bankrupting us, making us less safe, and which we are ultimately going to lose. What I am saying is that, for all their outspoken drivel regarding the tearing down of commensurately inexpensive social programs such as public parks, public radio, social security and public education, they seem curiously silent about the two wars, which will only cost us 170 billion dollars this year. Maybe they just don’t think about it.
I’m also not saying that government should hold our hands throughout life and give us pink ponies if that’s what our hearts desire– not at all, and I reserve a profound lack of respect for those who would seek to mislead and confound others by upholding such a foolish argument. What I’m saying is that, if I’m going to pay taxes to my government to perform such mundane tasks as inspect my meat and build my water runoffs to code, I’d like to know that it will at least have a dime to toss my way if I get cancer, too– and that it will do so without prejudice. Surely, assisting citizens who contribute to the economy (re: occasionally fathers and mothers who hold jobs and support children) who are battling cancer is at least as important to sustaining the economy, not to mention our oft-proclaimed Christian moral decency, as ensuring he or she remains free from E. coli and floods. Ron Paul said at the Tea Party Debate that family and friends and neighbors and churches should fill this gap– presumably, alone– but the fact is, not everyone has access to these resources and, as much as I respect him for his many progressive social views, it is profoundly un-American of Paul to imply that everyone should. Perhaps it is true that, when everyone in America has concerned family and friends and neighbors and churches at their disposal with plenty of time, money, interest and expertise to step up to tend to each others’ cancer, we will have no need for government to chip in towards the care of its sick and dying. Perhaps it is true that we will also be living in a fantasy utopia. Regardless, I don’t see it happening anytime soon, and in the meantime I expect my leaders in government to stop playing make-believe with our lives and nation and for government to do its job– which is to take care of its citizens’ most urgent, pressing needs. Being in a coma at the age of thirty meets that standard of need.