Today several of us went to the Farmers' Market and tabled in support of Senate Bill SB562. It's always fun getting out and speaking to the people! Despite the numerous fires in CA we had great weather, no smoke and no rain, though it was windy. Rocks on our literature was a must! Melissa Johnson-Camacho brought excellent color handouts, as well as Millie and Dan Braunstein, who are from Healthcare for All California. Special thanks to Cheli, Daphne, Louise, and of course, Kristal!
We had quite a few people come by talk about single payer healthcare, and some signed up for later information. We learned some things as well!
Some of the things I was able to address:
Government healthcare is a necessary part of social infrastructure, just like roads and sewers. About 100 years ago, there was a movement have robust sewer systems built in all U.S. towns and cities, in order to get rid of the cholera and diphtheria disease problems. This is a part of government healthcare, now taken for granted. Nobody wants Cholera, right? We don't make restaurants pay for sewer systems - the government does that for us with our taxes.
The same goes for our water systems. We expect to go anywhere in the U.S. and simply open the tap and drink the water. The government builds and maintains that too. If businesses or individuals had to worry about water systems building and maintenance, paying for it individually, it would be a disaster. The mantra goes, businesses figure out what they are good at, and do it well. Why then do they spend part of their year figuring out healthcare policies and how to pay for it? That's no way to do things; that's a mess.
Government should simply use taxes to pay doctors and dentists for the healthcare they provide. And It's a hard, physically intense job. It's social infrastructure that makes it possible for us to have healthy and productive lives - it's that simple.
Here's something we learned today that I didn't expect:
It turns out people in Sacramento are getting Hepatitis-A from their water supply. Because of the crash of 2008 and the ongoing housing crisis, such that individuals and families were thrown out of their homes, there is rampant homelessness in Sacramento and across the U.S. I'm sure you've noticed more people living on the street. Subsequently, waste is seeping into the groundwater. Who knew that making sure people have homes to live in is also a healthcare problem for everyone? But it is! A bad economy, a housing crisis, and homelessness can lead to Hepatitis-A in the tap water. That affects everyone - even people who don't think they get anything for paying taxes!