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Spirit of the Revolution

By John “Hai” Knapp

During my crusading for affordable healthcare I hear a lot of people, including Christians, say, “I don’t want to pay for your healthcare!”  That sounds incredibly selfish.  However, it might be understandable coming from someone who can’t provide their own health insurance, who feels he or she has to pay for someone on Medicaid.

The fact of the matter is that all of us already pay for each other’s health care. When you pay your electric bill, your heating bill, your telephone service, and your cable TV you are making sure that the supplier can provide healthcare for their employees.

In church, more than once, we went over the Bible account of the Prodigal Son, Luke 15:11-31, where the older son was so angry at how well the younger child was treated after being found. The older son reminds me of those that say, “I don’t want to pay for your healthcare.” The father counseled the older son and said, “Everything I have is yours; but today, your brother who was dead is alive, who was lost is found.”
It has also occurred to me that, “I don’t want to pay for your healthcare, either”; but I really far more don’t want to pay for the health insurance companies’ abuse of U.S. citizens and misuse of our payments. I don’t want to pay them to lobby to keep their con business in place. I don’t want to pay them to research how they can legally get away with denying claims.  I don’t want to fund bribery by insurance companies to get decisions by the government in their best interests.

Another thing I don’t want to pay for is the incarceration of someone who became a criminal because he couldn’t find affordable access to psychiatry. My humane side says, “Let’s get his mental illness treated so he won’t have to go to jail.” My taxpayer side says, “I would rather pay for the psychiatric treatment than the incarceration.” It costs us taxpayers $40,000 a year per inmate. I also have to consider the fact it could have been me needing for him to pay the taxes for my psychiatric treatment so I don’t have to end up in jail.

By far, passage HR 676, single payer health care, is much less of the two evils. Experts have indicated that through HR 676 it costs less to cover every citizen than our current cutthroat system. I would rather pay for HR 676 via taxes; even though someone making less may be paying less in taxes.

My mom, now retired, use to work for Social Services of Nebraska. She observed tax money spent on denying Medicaid to some who probably need it, but did not meet the guidelines. Instead of denying people, our taxes could have been spent providing insurance for many more citizens. 

Who needs Medicaid? The ones who are between jobs due to the recession need Medicaid insurance every bit as much as the ones whom the state guidelines say “can’t work”.  And they will continue to need it until they find a new job, pass the probation period, and become eligible for work-based insurance, if it is even available.

A-For-Da-Ble Health’ will save our economy,
It is in the best interest of everybody,
If every job moves out of the country,
Than (tell me!) whose gonna pay the medical fee?

           — Original song by John “Hai” Knapp, The Charger Plant.

John “Hai” Knapp is a folk musician/singer/songwriter and activist for affordable healthcare.

By Lenette Evans

On December 10 my stepson, Bill, was in a fatal automobile accident when he was the passenger in the backseat of an SUV that two of his friends owned. It slid on Red Arrow Highway near Sawyer, Michigan and collided with a car, hitting the gas tank.
The driver of the SUV got his wife out of the front passenger seat to the roadside and then went to help Bill, who was trapped in the backseat and engulfed with flames that burned all of his hair, his face, eyes, and neck.

The next day Bill had surgery on his broken back.  His third vertebra had shattered and it took the doctors ten hours to pick fragments of bone out of his back and to place a metal rod that he will have for the rest of his life. You could not recognize him because his face, neck and his eyes were extremely swollen.

The worst part of all of this is that Bill and his friends are heroin addicts!  Can you imagine being a heroin addict, can’t move, in chronic pain and going through drug withdrawals at a hospital?

He was given pain medication after pain medication because not only was he in pain but he was going through drug withdrawals and unfortunately our hospitals and medical staff are not equipped or prepared in how to handle drug users/addicts.

Not only was this difficult for him to go through but was a nightmare for the medical staff. This is not to mention the heartache and heartbreak families go through when a family member is addicted to drugs or alcohol.

While he was at the hospital a phone was released to him to make phone calls.
When our hospitals are dealing with drug addicts there are certain rules that need to be addressed.

Berrien County has no real drug/alcohol rehab facilities in our area. If our children and teens in the community have a problem with drugs and alcohol and need help they have to go to places in Kalamazoo or Grand Rapids, or down to South Bend, Indiana or Chicago.
This makes it difficult for the individual or family who has no car. Our government needs to work on having better drug/alcohol rehabilitation centers that are Christian based.
We need powerful impacting programs that will make a difference.

My step son has been in and out of jail and in and out of rehabilitation centers and has left them all and has gotten back on the streets every time. He has only gotten worse.
My step son Bill, as well as others, DO NOT need jail.

They need a christian based rehabilitation program that will be a one year program in a “lock down” type facility where they cannot leave under any circumstances.
Our teens need to be transformed and need programs that work.

The Berrien County court system, judges, lawyers, and probation officers need to work with these teens and the families so we can impact our childrens lives and make a difference where we can see total positive change!

Lenette Evans
Saving Souls Ministries


This article originated in the People's Tribune
PO Box 3524, Chicago, IL 60654, 773-486-3551,
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