You are the owner of this article.

Politicians are pulling a Robin Hood reversal

Willie Mae Samuel

Willie Mae Samuel, founder and director of the African American Connection for the Performing Arts in Rome

 Taking money from the poor to give to the rich. What a change has come over us in this country.

One of my former students questioned me last week when I said that this is an administration that will let citizens die in the streets. He said, “Mrs.  Samuel you can’t believe that do you? This administration is not that hardhearted.” The question and the statement angered me so I did not answer him. I try not to respond when I feel anxiety. I waited a while to get in a non-toxic place where I could center in on the question. My answer to him would have been, “No, they do not let them die in the streets, but in their sick beds at home, because they do not have insurance or the insurance ran out and the hospital officials were told to release them and send them home to die.”

 I shared this before that I had a nephew die because he could not pay for healthcare. Before you label him, let me tell you that he spent 10 years in the Air Force. He had inherited the terrible disease called diabetes. I think they call that a pre-existing condition. I had another dear friend who had no insurance and would only go to the hospital when her death was inevitable. She never had the co-pay. One of the greatest actors with connectionsdied because he did not have healthcare.

William Kelly ended up returning to South Georgia dying from cancer. The thing that I remember is that William was so upset about the Affordable Health Care Act when it passed. He loved this country so much. His question to me was, “who is going to pay the cost of our care?” My answer to him was, “We the taxpayers.” Before leaving to go home to die he called me and asked me to take him to the doctor I took him to the place that was in West Rome near Big Lots. He had no co-pay money. He asked me for $50, and I was able to let him have it that time, but you do know that it is not a one-time payment. Very few people who are having a hard time can afford to walk around with $30-$50 in their pockets. So yes, people are dying every day because of poor healthcare or no healthcare. Those of you who do not have anyone close to you with health problems that need to be seen after, consider yourselves, your family and friends blessed.

Do you know what the Republicans plan to do with the money cut from the Affordable Care Act? I will answer you. The plan is to cut the taxes on the top 1 percent rich people so that they can do more exciting things for their families. Like send the billionaire family of Trump on a week’s vacation.

You say, “Well, that money allotted for Medicare and Medicaid is running up the deficit, and we already owe too much.” Did Price know that when he took the private plane for 3 months that cost the American people $400,000. Did he consider that to be okay? I wonder why when Mr. Trump visited Mara-la-go and played golf for $2,000,000 each trip, it was okay. I wonder why, when the money was used to pay the secret service men for the security of five children — and their families —nobody said anything. There are many more who are wasting your tax payer money, and it will surface soon — and very soon — as the old spiritual says. They are playing follow the leader. Trump is doing it and will continue to do so as long as he can keep you distracted.

All I can say is those of you who are keeping your mouth shut must continue to keep quiet when the next president does the same. You are allowing a precedent to be established.

How does a group of people become hollow? Their insides are made of straw. How can the richest country of the world deny millions of needed people health care? These Republicans are saying, “We only care about winning.” Winning what? You are reeking havoc on human dignity and the right to life for millions of people.

I hope you readers are wise enough to know that AHC is not failing from its own weakness. Price, before being fired, had already cut a large amount of the money for Medicare. He reduced the number of days for open enrollment. Price directed the heads in different states to cut funds to the navigators by as much as 90 percent in some cases. Navigators are the ones who help those of us who do not understand how insurance works to figure out what we need. One of the directors in Mississippi pulled the cover off last week because he knew it to be wrong. I have not heard anymore from him so maybe he got fired for revealing the information. These facts are the reason Trump keeps saying the he has not given up trying to repeal AHC. His aim is to kill it first by sabotaging it of the ability to breathe. He is ordering the leaders to cut off the funding.

Trump never fights fair. He is the kind of fighter who will slip and throw a handful of sand in his opponent eyes. He has already picked up the sand to throw. A few Republicans see the sand and most of the Democrats as well. What will they do?

Willie Mae Samuel is the founder and director of the African American Connection for the Performing Arts in Rome.