Health Care Reform and Civil Rights: There's No Comparison

I can't tell you the number of folks I talked to and listened to in Washington who equated health care reform with civil rights struggles and compared being on the wrong side of health care with being on the wrong side of history and the opposite side of the angels.

So a vote for health care reform was brave; a vote against it, politics as usual. Those for this reform, soulful; those against it, soul-less.

As if the size of one's heart was determined by the size of the reform package he or she was supporting or not supporting. That to stand on the better side of angels, you better add a few more zeroes.

Please tell me what's so brave about spending someone else's money? Or what's so angelic about taxing someone else's paycheck? Or so heroic about promising benefits to all and insisting, with a straight face, that all this will be paid by only a few?

How is it we've some to compare civil rights marchers who risked their lives with often very un-civil politicians who risked — at worst — someone exposing their pork?

I'd like to know how anyone can equate Nancy Pelosi locking arms for a program all about political expediency with Martin Luther King locking arms for a cause that defined history.

And what does it say of our times when courage is defined not by the size of the character you bring to a battle than by the size of the check you write to finance it?

Something is very wrong when we vilify those who dare question how we pay for a dream and all but canonize for sainthood those who spend money we don't even have to finance a nightmare.

Because this isn't about how many angels can dance on the head of a pin, but how many pinheads can dance around the facts and tell us they're angels.

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