So the news has broken and the President’s Health Care Mandate’s constitutionality is upheld.
Personally, I am not against the idea of national health care coverage legislation. I would be thrilled if something were to be worked out to make it happen here in this country. I spent 10 years in Canada and came away quite impressed with how it all worked there. Of course the reality is that the United States is quite a bit bigger and more difficult beast to tame than Canada when it comes to implementing a national health care system. I have no idea what the best answer for health care is in this country, but these are some concerns of mine:
- My biggest concern is that health care is coming to be understood as a “right” – instead of a privilege. Health care has good aims. I have good Christian reason to think highly of it. We know doctors and nurses are the Godly facilitators of our health and healing. This is all wonderful and fabulous. However – health care is most assuredly a GIFT of God and not something that we should ever assume is our “right” as a citizen of this country (and it certainly isn’t in our constitution!) Unfortunately our only “right” as humans is sickness and death (the wages of sin!) If we begin to assume health care is a right then we run the danger of taking it for granted and misusing it. And of course, ultimately, striving toward good health proves to be a flailing after the wind as we all do die at one point or another! Sometimes I think that our striving for all the latest health care is worshipping a false god – a blatant attempt at being our own savior and an obvious fleeing from death and God.
- Of course one important issue that has yet to be resolved is the issue that the president of the LCMS, Rev. Matthew Harrison, and the leaders of many other religious bodies, are concerned about… and that has to do with the rules presently set to take effect that state that health care providers (including those run by churches and privately held businesses) must pay for abortion coverage and birth control – including those medications which induce abortions. This is most certainly an infringement on our religious freedom if we do not have the option to opt out of those requirements.
- The final concern that I have (that I am spending time dealing with presently, anyway!) is that this is going to be far more expensive than we realize. Am I personally going to be prepared to be a lot poorer because of it? Yes! I am going to try to be, anyway. But I don’t think most people are. In this country we want everything for nothing! “Yes! Yes! Let’s have health care!” we all love to say. “It is a good thing!” But then the real bill will come when we can’t borrow any more money and the government is broke. THEN we will be crying!
Let’s pray for our country in these difficult times!