Wednesday, February 28, 2007

You can't pursue happiness if you are sick

George Bush killed a little boy on Sunday. Now before you go saying, field, you are giving in to too much hyperbole, consider the following. On Sunday little Deamante Driver, a twelve year old in Maryland, died from a fu****g toothache. Yes folks you heard me. A toothache! It seems that bacteria from his abscess seeped into his brain, and not even two operations, and six weeks in the hospital could save him.

Unfortunately, the poor fellows mother didn't have proper health insurance. If she did, it would have cost her insurance company about$250,000 for Deamante's care. Now his mother did have Medicare at one time, but unfortunately, her plan lapsed. Now stop me if you haven't heard this one before: The poor lady worked many odd jobs, including cleaning up after old white people,( also known as a home health care worker) and of course, like so many other companies in America, her company didn't offer her medical coverage. To many American workers, the thought of not having medical coverage for their family is unthinkable, but guess what, there are over forty five million of your fellow Americans who have no medical coverage. And sadly, Deamante's mother was one of those individuals.

Ironically, Prince Georges County Maryland is supposed to be in one of the more affluent areas in the country for African Americans, but consider, only a third of the children in Maryland's Medicare program have dental coverage. And before you go ripping Maryland, it's important to note that only 29% of the District's children are covered, and only 24.3% of children in that great state that just apologized for slavery, Virginia, are covered as well. So it would seem that Deamante's situation was not such an anomaly after all. This tragic incident could have happened to damn near any little boy in any state of the union whose family doesn't have proper health coverage.

So back to George Bush. "George Bush doesn't care about black people" No Kanye, George Bush doesn't care about black people, poor people, old people, or young people. George Bush didn't kill Deamante by running over him with the presidential limo, or boring him to death with one of his muddling speeches. No, he killed him by failing to address the growing health care crisis in this country, and dumping what will end up being a trillion dollars into a war to free a God forsaken country half way around the world. All the while he and his cronies -yes bad perm lady you too- turns away while here in America children die from a fu****g toothache.

We live in a country of course that is the only one that bases health care on employment. So unless you have a good job, you are basically screwed. I am not a big Hillary supporter, but a few years ago girlfriend was a visionary when it comes to this health care crisis. Hey, at least she had the guts to take on this issue head on, and try to bring about a universal health care plan for this country. Of course, she went as far as the insurance industry lobbyist, and the rethuglicans would let her. They fought back, and before you knew it, girlfriend was a pariah in her own country. Now the Arnold out in California, and the folks in Georgia are all calling for universal health coverage in their states. Not to mention rethuglican candidate,Mitt Romney, now touts his universal health care plan for Massachusetts while he runs for president. So now everyone is on board. Even the business community is on board because they even realize that we have a health care crisis on our hands. "Our soaring health care costs put American goods and services at a significant competitive disadvantage..." So says John J. Castellani, president of The Business Roundtable. Yeah right! You are about ten years too fu****g late Mr. Castellani. According to Karen Ignagni, president of America Health Insurance Plans, what it took to fund this war could be used to extend health care to every three and four year old uninsured in this country, to vaccinate all the children of the world against all deceases, and still you would have half the money left over to fight a war.

But instead of trying to formulate a sound health care policy, George and the neocons chose war, and they chose it over providing for the most vulnerable among us. If you really want to "protect the American people" George, you might want to start by making sure they all have proper health care, and at least access to it, instead of getting a hard on every time you see a picture of a fu****g Humvee.

So yes I will stick by my original statement. That little boy in Maryland died because of a country and a government that failed him and his family. And the last time I checked, the leader of that country and its government is George W. Bush.

Oh before I go, I just saw on the FAKE NEWS NETWORK, a brother that I will definitely have on my coon list the next time it comes out. His name is Erik Rush, and apparently he wrote an article accusing Barack Obama of being a separatist and belonging to a separatist church. Just what the FAKE NEWS NETWORK wanted, and they found their house negro (Mr. Rush) to deliver the message. Now as I have said many times before, I am still not sure about Obama, and I am still on the fence with him. But if the half and half man is a separatist, well then I am a fu****g Mau Mau Fighter.

And one more thing, let's keep the story of Lavena Johnson front and center. This poor heroes family deserves some answers as to how she died in Iraq.

I'm out.


T. S. Snowden said...

You know, I remember not going to the doctor when I needed to as a kid because we had no health coverage. Unfortunately as you stated-- the case of Deamante Driver is in play all over the nation. I don't particularly care for Hilary myself but I wasn't mad at her for that universal health care plan.
As for that feckless coon ass mutha-fu*ka Erik Rush, I just have to say that it is a wonder he gets any work done between rallying for the building of fences to keep out immigrants, holding up the Minute Men (who are largely comprised of folks that would see him go the way of our brother in Jasper Texas not even 10 years ago-truth be told) And I can't even begin to discuss his absurd 12 point self hate bulletin against Obama. House Negro doesnt even begin to cover it!

meera bowman-johnson said...

Two words: Universal healthcare (or is that three?) Either way, Barack
Obama wouldn't have let this happen.

Andrew Kujan said...

Good commentary on this story. This tragedy illustrates beyond a shadow of a doubt that we need Universal Health Care in America.

I am hoping for a response from my Maryland legislators on this. They need to make sure that every child on Medicaid in Maryland is getting quality coverage.

dnA said...

Don't forget John McWhorter. He will be trotted out incessantly, as he always is, by conservatives to belittle the accomplishments of other black people. It is his sole purpose.

Anonymous said...


When I read this story originally, the anger just bubbled up.

As the late activist Lu Palmer said:

It's enough to make a Negro turn Black.

As for Obama's church home of 20 years?

FN, I can say, without equivocation, that the head of that church congregation until this past year, Dr. Wright, is a Field Negro. He's brought in someone new to transition so that Trinity won't die out with him. He's passing it on, unlike so many of our institutions.

Trinity is about Black people helping Black people. Nothing wrong with your success, but with success comes responsbility. Check out the website,

Trinity United Church of Christ adopted the Black Value System written by the Manford Byrd Recognition Committee chaired by Vallmer Jordan in 1981. We believe in the following 12 precepts and covenantal statements. These Black Ethics must be taught and exemplified in homes, churches, nurseries and schools, wherever Blacks are gathered. They must reflect on the following concepts:

Commitment to God
Commitment to the Black Community
Commitment to the Black Family
Dedication to the Pursuit of Education
Dedication to the Pursuit of Excellence
Adherence to the Black Work Ethic
Commitment to Self-Discipline and Self-Respect
Disavowal of the Pursuit of "Middleclassness"
Pledge to make the fruits of all developing and acquired skills available to the Black Community
Pledge to Allocate Regularly, a Portion of Personal Resources for Strengthening and Supporting Black Institutions
Pledge allegiance to all Black leadership who espouse and embrace the Black Value System
Personal commitment to embracement of the Black Value System.

The Pastor as well as the membership of Trinity United Church of Christ is committed to a 10-point Vision:

A congregation committed to ADORATION.
A congregation preaching SALVATION.
A congregation actively seeking RECONCILIATION.
A congregation with a non-negotiable COMMITMENT TO AFRICA.
A congregation committed to BIBLICAL EDUCATION.
A congregation committed to CULTURAL EDUCATION.
A congregation committed to LIBERATION.
A congregation committed to RESTORATION.
A congregation working towards ECONOMIC PARITY.

So, you decide for yourself.

What's wrong with anything listed above? Aren't those the principles, that the GOP wags their fingers at the Black community and preaches to them that they should have, and the reason why we're in the state we're in, is because we don't follow them?

Or could it be that all they are is talking points for them, for when they find a group that actually does them (which is nothing new for the Black community - how the hell do you think we've made it all these years), but that this group isn't shinning and grinning Republicans, but maintain their commitment to the community....they just can't accept it.

Mahndisa S. Rigmaiden said...

03 01 07

Hey FN:
How sad! For a while I have been debating the merits of universal healthcare and I still am not convinced that it is an answer to our problem. I think a consciousness transforming event has to happen such that we VALUE healthcare as a society. Up to this point, we have written it off as a material cost, a service. We have not seen it as a NECESSITY. Until this occurs, I expect to hear many more sob stories.

But since we live in a society driven by dollars, who will pay for universal healthcare? And what exactly does that mean? Does it mean that the Bill Gates style rich people will have the exact same coverage as people living in the projects? Does it meant that our taxes must be raised substantially to pay for it?

While in my heart of hearts I think universal healthcare is a nice idea, I am not sure how practically it could be realized in our country presently.

With that in mind, given the rhetoric of many republicans you would think that their charitable contributions doubled to make up for the budget cuts to social programmes...

Tasha said...

Great Post, Field.

I work in Healthcare Administration/Finance, so I see these types of stories all too often. I'm on the phone nearly every day with parents who have to choose whether to pay for their children to get the proper school vaccinatons or paying their utility bills and with other people in equally difficult situations.

I do have to agree with mahndisa about the Universal Healthcare system being proposed. Our country is built on a very unbalanced capitalist foundation, and I'm not sure that I would want to see the aristocratic segment of the population with the same free (or inexpensive) healthcare that lower income people have. I would want them to contribute more out of pocket for their care. In theory, the idea works, but in practice it could fall apart. However, having said that, there is something to be said for universally accessible health care (based on sliding fee schedules, etc), and I can only hope this country can adopt that.

Paul said...

I don't know the whole story, just what I read so far on the internet, and while I consider myself a progressive brother and I believe the healthcare situation is fucked up in this country AND I sympathize with the child's family, I gotta say this... why the fuck didn't they find a way to deal with the tooth in the first place?!

I'm also not a parent, but I have difficulty imagining a situation when my baby is in pain and I go "ah, sorry, can't afford it..." People, do what you gotta do, but damn, take care of your kids!

Mahndisa S. Rigmaiden said...

03 01 07

I think Tasha's idea about sliding scales for healthcare makes sense. We artificially shield consumers from health care costs and those who are middle class really get screwed the most because the poor don't have to pay for as many out of pocket costs. I used to work as a medical secretary and the state and federally subsidized programmes paid for people to get heart transplants! Meanwhile, the middle class peoples' HMOs were blocking all attempts for the cardiac patients to see specialists because they were out of plan!

I go to many low income people's homes to tutor children under NCLB. Almost all of these 'low income' people have big screen TV's that are expensive! I do believe that they should pay something out of pocket for health care inline with their income! That way everyone is paying their share percentage wise. That would be a lot better than the system we have now!

Anonymous said...

Tasha and mahndisa, as usual you both make excellent points. (I like the sliding scale based on income idea)But my point is that we need to do something. At least put some options on the table. I have heard of some very creative ideas which I didn't have the time or the space to post about, so I know it can be done.

And yeah Paul, you are right, but I didn't want to go there this time. That was too easy to call out the mother in this case. At the end of the day, the government is charged to protect-even apparent slackers like Deamante's mom, and they failed.

ecthompson said...

Very Sad but not surprising. I see it every day, every day. Like my mother always said a ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.

Anonymous said...

I think we should have universal health care. The big question is how to pay for it. I think there should be an excise tax on professional sports tickets, perhaps a dollar or two. There should also be an excise tax on monthly dish and cable bills. There is HUGE money being spent on professional sports and this is a way to help fund health care

Brian said...

This is sick stuff....sad and depressing, yet not surprising.

We hear about similar situations more and more often. Like the family of 5? who died in a house fire in Philly because they were trying to keep warm. Apparently it was an old rundown house with no electricity (probably shut off) they were using a bootleg hookup.

There was also the case of the immigrant family in Chicago that lost 5 or 6 children in a fire last year because their electricity had been cut off and they were using candles.

I also recall a baby dying a few years back because the family could not afford a certain medical procedure that might have saved him.

It is really sickening when you contrast it with $400+ billion dollars being wasted on a nonsensical war in Iraq. A fraction of that money could provide some kind of healthcare safety net for poor children in this country.

I face a similar situation... I never really had great healthcare growing up. I could never visit a dentist (before I moved with my father). And to this day, my health coverage is weak.

Universal Health coverage is a must for this country. Unfortunately we only hear about it during political campaigns. After these crooks get elected, somehow we don't hear about it anymore. The Clinton's are a perfect example of that. They used Universal coverage in two campaigns... but failed to act on anything they talked about. As usual, the American public let them off the hook twice.

This is just one of the reasons why I wonder why the Clinton's are treated like folk heroes. Heroes to who?????

Brian said...

Oh yeah... did I mention that Bush cut medicaid in his 2008 Budget proposal that just came out?

There is something criminal about this....IMO.

And Paul.... I agree somewhat, but then again, an abscess is not easy to deal with...and anyone can get it.

It has to do with the rising dental costs. Without insurance, dental costs are unbelievably high....even for simple procedures.

And more and more employers are shifting the cost to their employees. At the plantation where I work, most of my co-workers cannot afford the insurance.

Anonymous said...

Great work here. Thank you for this. And yes for sure, universal health care is our only hope in this country, and I mean we need it yesterday.

On Obama, the situation is sure complicated in terms of speculating what he would do - but I wouldn't be too quick to assume his pontifications are his ideology. I hope they are, but we've all loved and lost and know all too well to tread cautiously.



-=Topper=- said...

I don't get into capitalist and conservative ideologies in regard to national healthcare.

In that, the bottom line is still THIERS. And thier highest concern, and if national healthcare does become real, they want to be sure that the monetary responsibility isn't totaly thiers.

I deal in the mind set of the demogogue hypocrisy we call the United States.

Now lets look at History 101. Truman addressed possible national healthcare for all during his term. The very idea was rejected by the AMA, yes the american medical association, and of course the republican party that went as far to suggest that it was a communist plot.

Bottom line, we would now have had national healthcare for some sixty years, and I could possibly think a better outcome for Deamante.


On a side note field, I think I could be a field negro based on your point system. Outside of a minor detail

Anonymous said...

Topper, I have been to your site, and I think you qualify for FN status. No minor detail would disqualify you. I mean even if you were white, remember, we have honorary field negroes as well :)