Thursday, May 04, 2017

Journalist to Obamacare Activist: I Love America More than I Love Your Breasts


Presumably Mary Ladd

By Nicholas Stix

Mary Ladd: “Please mansplain where this state is, because I have many pals who require constant and quality medical help for access and information on the pills they take, and things like chemo, hormone therapy, hot flashes, horrible reactions (better left imagined than described), and itchy skin.”

Dear Ms. Ladd,

I love America more than I love your breasts.

I have read your essay (and the above-quoted passage more than once), but failed to find any argument. The best I can do as a reconstruction of your implicit “argument” is:

‘I need Obamacare, and anyone who opposes my getting it is evil.’

Obamacare has thrown millions of Americans off of health insurance, including people who under Obamacare were paying thousands of dollars per month in skyrocketing premiums, in order to pay for you and for millions of other people whom Obama had promised would never get Obamacare, because they are illegal aliens. Obama lied about that, because lying is what he does, and because he is racist and evil. (“If you like your doctor, you can keep your doctor,” etc.)

“I need this, and you have no right to deny me it” is not a policy argument.

Since you are looking to pick taxpayers’ pockets, they most certainly do have a right to deny you it.

If you were my wife or sister, I would hope that you would get treatment. But my selfish desire to get help for my loved ones, is not a policy argument. And your demand that people extrapolate from you to the women in their life who might potentially get breast cancer, is also not a social policy argument. You try and turn selfishness into a virtue.

Insulting men (“Please mansplain where this state is…”) is not a social policy argument.

Obamacare, if left in place, will destroy the American economy. And that was Obama’s intent. Thus, as far as you are concerned, the entire country should be laid waste to for the sake of your beautiful breasts.

I love America more than I love your breasts.

What you are doing is down and dirty, and of a recognizable type. It is political opportunism by someone who thinks she can get a rhetorical free ride.

We see this sort of opportunism and cowardice all the time, and it is almost always the Left playing this game. I suppose that is because the Left has for generations controlled the MSM.

We saw the same opportunism with Nelson Shields III’s Handgun Control Inc. A member of the Nation of Islam slaughtered Shields’ son and namesake. The courageous thing to do would have been to demand action against that murder cult. Instead, Shields demanded that good guys be disarmed.

After Colin Ferguson murdered Carolyn Maloney’s husband and shot her son to pieces, did she react rationally, and demand that the State Department bar entry to crazy, black racists from the Third World? No, she demanded that law-abiding Americans be disarmed, and rode that hobby-horse to several terms in Congress.

Christopher Reeve broke his neck horseback riding, which left him a quadriplegic. He then signed on to a special effects ad which showed him walking again, thanks to stem cells harvested from aborted unborn children. The commercial was actually in support of about abortion, not medical miracles for quadriplegics.

Christopher Reeve was a lefty, and Republicans were too cowed to criticize him. It doesn’t take much to cow the Cowardly Party.

The most recent case of such opportunism was at the Democrat National Convention, where Jihadi Khizr Khan, who supports the nullification of the U.S. Constitution, and the imposition of sharia in its place, lectured Donald Trump on the Constitution. When Trump defended himself, the entire Left attacked him, while the so-called Right did nothing to defend him.

You thus join the Hall of Shame of political opportunists who exploited their status as victims in the service of evil.


P.S. When my grandfather was about 80, he contracted cancer. (I don’t recall which kind.) After a long regimen of grueling treatment, the cancer went into remission. Very soon after getting the good news, he got the bad news: He’d contracted lymphoma, a different kind of cancer. The doctors told him he could undergo yet another regimen of treatment, but it would only buy him a few more months. Grandpa said, the hell with it, and died like a man, at 82, in 1986.


Congressman Mo Brooks, Do You Want Me to Die?
By Mary R. Ladd
May 2, 2017

Representative Mo Brooks of Alabama, you’re essentially voting me off the island and dumping me into a bay of Great White sharks, where I will suffer and die in a sad and bloody fashion. Without medicine and treatment for a pre-existing condition called breast cancer, which I was “surprise!” diagnosed with at age thirty-nine, that’s what you’re doing. I won’t be alone as I gasp for air, since so many other folks with common health problems will be isolated, ignored and left out: from heart issues, to allergies, asthma, diabetes, other forms of cancer, as well as birth defects and strokes, we will not be able to pay our way to survival in America under your watch. When you allow these “pre-existing conditions” to be penalized, you’re making it become far too expensive for this lady.

I’ve had seven surgeries, 22 rounds of chemo, 8 infections and 69 blood draws. I wish my time in clinics, hospitals, and pharmacies did not have to be a part of my life, but realize there are so many fellow patients. We come in many shapes, ages, sizes, and personalities and may share the same goal: to feel better.

By repealing the affordable healthcare act (ACA) and bringing in a medical system that you think favors “good” people over an often sick 43-year old like me, your vote essentially dictates how long I will live, and how I will live. Even if I will live.

Since you have the vote, power and TV time, I am listening to you. But I don’t like what you’re saying and doing, and am offering a perspective that may persuade you to consider other ideas. As well as people that do not look or talk like you, but deserve help and care just the same.

When you said on CNN yesterday that people who lead good lives don’t have to worry about getting and dealing with pre-existing conditions, you’re basically telling the world — and patients like me — that I got cancer because I must be bad. Who are you to judge what is good or bad? There is no morality pledge to being American. I’ve eaten some juicy and rare beef cheeseburgers and kissed a lot of folks, but I continually work on myself to try and act as kind and friendly as I can to every being I encounter. If you want to paint folks as bad versus good, I’m not sure what other insights and data I can offer to affirm that I deserve to be able to stay in the city and state I was born in without plotting for a too-grim economic and health future that could happen tomorrow, next week or soon.

Your actions and words are a message that my life is not good and has not been good or worthy of help and consideration. It feels like you are putting the fault on me for getting a breast cancer diagnosis that happened to be the same day as “back to school night” for my young son. Tying my illness and pre-existing condition to a notion of goodness is frankly not fair and should not be a legitimate guiding principle for your vote.

A local breast cancer support group I am in welcomes an average of 30 new members a month. Are we all “bad” people destined for ginormous medical bills? Or no care at all? Do you genuinely think we have each done so many bad things that would cause us to have varying stages of a cancer that attacks our bodies and weakens us? Cancer causes us to cry and worry in the middle of the night over bills, symptoms. Along with the people we love, as we wonder, how many days/weeks/months/years do I have left?

How will I pay for it all?

Should we all really listen to the idea of having us move to whatever state will make it reasonable for us to live, work, and seek treatment in? Please mansplain where this state is, because I have many pals who require constant and quality medical help for access and information on the pills they take, and things like chemo, hormone therapy, hot flashes, horrible reactions (better left imagined than described), and itchy skin. Then there’s the awkward and embarrassing waffling between constipation and diarrhea in the same hour — a reality that is a visual and physical reminder of how precarious and crappy one’s health is. Combined with the anxiety and exhaustion that comes from knowing you may need to undergo chemo and other costly treatments and surgeries — all to attempt to kill the disease that is growing and attacking your body.

At 43, I’d like to think and hope that I will be able to watch my son graduate from high school. That would be a day that reflects hope, opportunity and hard work, and one that my own family celebrated with me when I graduated at age 17.

Other milestones tempt me daily to keep going. My mom just passed away on April 1 from complications related to a series of strokes. You would classify her as another one of your “she must not be a good person” pre-existing condition cases. I can’t imagine how (if?) her care would have been managed under your desired system — she could not move or walk on her own for over 15 months. So getting her to “move to another state” for us pre-existing condition folks frankly would have been impossible.

I have clogged eye ducts — from 22 rounds of chemo, it often makes it tough for me to type and look at my computer. This being modern times, I work hard at being able to show up for work, loves (family), friends and community. My eyes atrophied from chemo, so I have dried up eye ducts that are similar to those of an 83-year old, according to one of the many doctors I see on a regular basis. That means I often have to apply a steroid cream (medicine) to my eye lids and take a lot of time to wash my eye lids daily. That and using warm compresses helps my eyes feel closer to normal, although I do always need to have artificial tears nearby. This has all become routine, and involves me regularly going to a doctor and nearby pharmacy, where I sometimes sit on the ground because I am too tired and would not ask a senior or fellow ill person for their chair. A texting teen may get a meaningful gaze from me if I am especially zonked.

I have brittle bones from going through early menopause. My hysterectomy was tied to a tough decision related to my breast cancer and learning through medical treatment that I carry the BRCA1 gene — another unwanted (medical) surprise. There are many hours where I can barely stretch or move, because my joints are weak and stiff. That’s something I did not experience before I got that call from a lady doctor when I was 39. It seems to me that I am a good enough person, but instead got dealt a tough or less than ideal break genetically and medically speaking.

Again, why should my innate goodness matter?

Environmental factors are also at play when it comes to the causes of breast cancer, but my words here are meant to keep the focus on who deserves health care and why.

I have volunteered to help others since I could walk as a toddler, although my younger brother would probably have called it “bossiness” over “help” in our early years. I am friendly and enthusiastic often. When I see someone that needs a hand — from getting donations for a fundraiser for science labs at my son’s school to carrying groceries or offering an ear or advice to a fellow patient or writer who may be younger or older than me, I give it. I will carry someone’s books or bags if they look like they are in worse shape than me — even though I do tend to get winded or worn out often.

Senator, you have the power to make life healthy and good for many of us Americans. I will be watching through my sometimes-cloudy eyes to see what you say and do next, and hope you talk to your constituents, sisters and friends who may in fact be dealing with pre-existing conditions, extreme worry, serious illness and disease.

Mary Ladd’s writing has appeared in Playboy, Time Magazine, KQED, & San Francisco Weekly. She is co-author of The Wig Report, a graphic novel [comic book] on catastrophic illness.

No comments: