Is Christianity dying in the US and Canada?

Friday, October 16, 2009

Obamacare: A Good Idea?

"The chronically ill and those toward the end of their lives are accounting for potentially 80 percent of the total healthcare bill out here." This is President Barack Obama speaking to the media.

This statement comes in the context of the Obama administration's nationalized health care proposal. Everyone agrees, the health care system needs change. The question is how? I am concerned that Obama's proposal will lead to big problems. With the government providing health care, they would decide who would receive medical assistance.

The U.K.'s National Health Service recently denied a drug to nearly 100,000 Alzheimer's patients simply because the drug was not "cost effective."

Nationalized health care could easily translate to a mindset that the "chronically ill and those toward the end of their lives" should be deprived of health care to save money. Should those "without quality of life" be neglected? Is that a good idea? Obamacare is one step closer.

Charlie Wedenmeyer, the high school football coach who coached Buffalo Bills quarterback Trent Edwards has ALS (commonly called Lou Gehrig's disease). 80% of ALS patients die within five years of getting the disease. Miraculously, Wedenmeyer has survived for 33 years.

The symptoms of ALS start with progressively weakening or stiffening muscles, followed by paralysis, and increasing loss of speech. For Charlie Wedenmeyer, ALS also caused the kidney failure that has led to dialysis.

Hooked up to a ventilator, Wedenmeyer coaches from the sidelines by whispering to his wife Lucy, who relays the instructions. That's also the way he fulfills speaking engagements. Wedenmeyer regularly coaches, is a motivational speaker, and his encouraging story has been featured on CBS and PBS.

The 69-year-old is very concerned about the nationalized health care proposal. Should the government decide who receives health care? Charlie Wedenmeyer's medical treatments have astronomical costs, he's wheelchair bound, and can barely speak audibly. Will he fit the government's definition of "quality of life" or will his health care be neglected?

It's not just Charlie Wedenmeyer. Thousands of people are diagnosed with ALS and a host of other debilitating diseases each year. Obamacare can only lead to the government deciding who gets health care, and who is worthy of the cost to keep them alive. Why should that be Uncle Sam's choice? It's God's, and not Uncle Sam's place to decide when anyone should die.

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