A few years ago, during the early part of the 2000's, I moved to New York City. Roughly, four months upon my arrival to the Big Apple in search of a dream, I had been laid off from a start-up urban website that I thought would be my rocket to the stars. The rocket never had any fuel.
The subsequent days, weeks and years were not without difficulty, especially from a health insurance point of view. I recall vividly stepping on a piece of glass in my small Flatbush Brooklyn apartment. I found impossible to dig the shard out of my foot at that time. On top of that, I already knew what lack of insurance produced - big medical bills. With no real source of income, I opted to live with the glass for a while. For weeks, I walked around with a painful piece of glass, for some foolish reason. I mean, I had a limp. I assumed it would heal over and I believed in those days, I was harder than the adversity life was throwing my way (I was). The skin never quite healed over the glass. In fact, my body rejected it and continued to push it out to my dismay - more pain. Eventually, my then-girlfriend, would perform a hood-surgery on my foot and remove the glassy fragment from my body. True story.
I have other stories from that period in my life like the time I ate some imitation crab meat that had me in a BK emergency room until dawn. Those doctor's didn't give a damn about me and ended up giving me some form of Benadryl. I could have done that. They should have called it "Been A Bill," because that's all it turned into. I paid that once the collection notices started to come, mainly because I forgot about it. Clearly, there are others with more dramatic, telling sagas. My life was simple, there were no "complications" like children, elderly, or more serious ailment. For those that do, change is on the way.
I was ecstatic to get the following message from President Obama, announcing the historic health care bill's passage yesterday:
Chuck -- For the first time in our nation's history, Congress has passed comprehensive health care reform. America waited a hundred years and fought for decades to reach this moment. Tonight, thanks to you, we are finally here. Consider the staggering scope of what you have just accomplished: Because of you, every American will finally be guaranteed high quality, affordable health care coverage. Every American will be covered under the toughest patient protections in history. Arbitrary premium hikes, insurance cancellations, and discrimination against pre-existing conditions will now be gone forever.
The bill isn't perfect and will not satisfy all, but it remains a massive positive step forward for all in dire need of health care here in America. On top of it all, President Obama now has accomplished one of his major initiatives to the dismay of his detractors. How American that, in this moment of glory, some of the ugliest, nastiest comments have been levied on those that have pushed this bill through. Hasn't positive change always been resisted in this way though?
So, I ask, what are your thoughts about the passing of the Heath Care Bill? And what are your experiences with not having insurance? What are your reservations?
Chuck "Jigsaw" Creekmur is the CEO of AllHipHop.com. Still, his views are his and
do not necessarily represent the views of the entire AllHipHop.com staff. He can be found at here and here.