What WOULD our Founding Fathers Say?

Listening to the sound bites coming out the mouths of “regular Americans” showing up at town hall meetings to “discuss” health care reform, you’d think we lived in a society on the verge of a civil war over health care.  I’ve been watching, with great interest, the mouthy, screaming attendees, drowning out our ELECTED representatives and not letting them get a word in.   I’m sure the politicians were elected into power, no?  And I’m sure that the whole point of a town hall meeting is to hear and be heard…as in, I speak, I listen.  You speak, you listen. 

One woman, Katy Abram, who captured her 3 seconds of fame by talking about what our founding fathers (at poor Arlen Spector’s town hall) would have wanted, got a round of applause.  So, of course, I have a couple of questions.  First, what WOULD our founding fathers (no mothers in there…but those were the times) think about the concept of accessible, affordable, preventive health care for its citizens?  They would have not had an opinion, because there was no such thing as health care.  If you got sick, there was hopefully some sort of doctor, or barber, in your town, or within a day’s drive, and if you were really lucky, you’d live.  But, if there had been a concept of a health program for the people, would they have been for or against?  I think they’d have been FOR. 

Why?  Because they were trying to unite a country.  Take the strengths of the collective and use them to build a concept of liberty and safety under the guidance of a constitution, or government position paper on how this collective should run.  If there had been the medicine available to heal so many ills, had there been more doctors, had there been easier forms of communication, I think our founding fathers would have liked to see a healthy and educated population evolve in this country.  So, those people who are quoting what the founding fathers would have wanted (in this instance, the right of the individual to choose — which bizarrely is exactly what Obama is saying, so I’m thinking people are arguing just to argue) should maybe give this another think or two.  I think they’ve really got this one wrong.  If it is good for the people, if it can help, or elevate the people, then  it can’t be against the founding principles of the union.

And then again, you may find that I’m just waxing eloquent.  Then never mind that argument.  I’ll cut to the chase and get to my second point.  Who gave permission to the hecklers and screamers at the town hall meetings to be so darn rude?  Seriously, folks, if you want to get all bent out of shape and yell at your elected leaders, give it a second think before heading out.  If I were a cashier and a customer started yelling at me the way people are yelling at these meetings, I’d tell them not to talk to me like that.  Yes, I’d lose them as a customer, but, heck, no one pays me enough to be yelled at and spoken to so disrespectfully. 

I realize that the concept of “good manners” is not included in the constitution, but such misplaced anger and blatant rudeness makes me wonder who their parents were?  I’ve never done well in an argument where my nose got bent out of shape.  If I start yelling, I can guarantee the other personwill stop listening.  And if they yell at me, and the argument escalates, I can also guarantee that we’ll both be so busy yelling at each other that no one will be listening.  And, the point of the town hall meetings, I believe, is to have dialogue.  Which is the opposite of the multiple monologues going on in public forums.  If I yelled like that, my mom would have sent me to my room.   I  think the Founding Fathers would say, “Go to your rooms, Town Hall Yelling People.  Go to your rooms and stay there until you figure out how to behave at the dinner table…umm…the town hall meeting.”

6 thoughts on “What WOULD our Founding Fathers Say?

  1. The people yelling sound like sound bites from conservative radio and cable news stations. I believe they are yelling because they are illiterate and cannot write to the elected officials. If congress has such a low rating from year to year then how do this incompetent officials get elected term after term. Folks need to turn off their TVs and find out who is really curbing inalienable rights. Local officials are the culprits and most people do not have a clue who their local officials are much less their senators and congress representatives.

    My real point is your sentence, “If I were a cashier and a customer started yelling at me the way people are yelling at these meetings, I’d tell them not to talk to me like that. Yes, I’d lose them as a customer, but, heck, no one pays me enough to be yelled at and spoken to so disrespectfully.” The company would have fired you immediately for challenging the customer who is always right and that is one of the big problems in this country. The multinational corporations who really rule our country through lobbyists. The Town Hall meetings are pacifiers. If the citizens of American were really serious about dissent then the streets would be filled everyday with opposition as the USA is 37th in the world of healthcare and falling fast in many other categories as well BUT then they would miss their favorite TV shows. Convenience is killing this country. Thank you for your article and the opportunity to refute.

  2. I hear you loud and clear Janet!

    How embarrassing for people in other countries or even our own to observe these loud, stupid slobs railing about a plan they obviously have not bothered to read or understand, while most of the world has NO clean drinking water or decent food, let alone health care! We are the ones looking like the third world country here!

    Americans continue to EAT themselves to DEATH while complaining that the government can’t magically MAKE them healthy. Did you notice the high level of obesity in those crowds?

    Laura Lee

  3. Karen: I’m not sure we are totally disagreeing! Where I don’t share the same opinion is that local officials are at the root of curbing inalienable rights. In my view, this issue really boils down to money and the pharmaceutical and insurance lobbies are incredibly monied and powerful. Who really stands to lose margin and profitability from a national health care program in the short run are these major multinational companies.

    Corporate greed, in my opinion, is the culprit.

    Laura Lee: I didn’t particularly notice obesity in the crowds…but now I have to go back and watch some of the video clips again. You make a good point!

  4. Franklin, Jefferson, Madison, Adams I beleive would NOT be for government controlled health care due to the following:

    1) They did not believe in government intrusion into private citizens lives.

    2) They did not believe in funding debt through the tax payers.

    3) They did want a strong Federal governemnt only to protect the citizens from foriegn enemies like England and to promote the general wlefare of its citizen to prosper in business and become the giant that it is today.

    Hamilton your right he was a liberal in all senses and loved debt and all the feel good things that go with it. He was raises on the islands and studied in europen countries so what do you expect.

    This health care bill is not about health care it is about control. The cost are unsustainable I don’t know how many people need to confirm that. It IS unconstitutional to take away someone elses liberty by force to give it to someone else. Health care is not a right. If you understood that the founders wanted to make sure our rights came from God and not man just so man could not take them away. The founders were brilliant men and knew the evils of mens hearts when they obtain power for too long.

  5. The Government, has had control of “citezen’s private lives, since the end of the civil war, and the beginning of the carpet baggers.
    Eminent domain, has become far more popular now than during the revolutionary war! The U.S.A. as we know it has been a failure in the structures of platforms in every state in the union, including the nation’s capitol! Every President in office since Johnson, has been a joke! Their cabnets are as off base, and in outer space as they can get! They raise taxes more on the poor folk in this country, and leave the rich and famous to keep excelling in their riches!
    What we need, is a good old fashion REVOLUTION WAR, to take back our country, and reign with a leader, who has gotten his fingers and hands calloused from work! Forget the college…all that does is give some richie a place to party!
    Hands on experience, dedication, firm moral neliefs in God and country, family!
    I have served in the Army of the United States, I love America, but, it is not the America it was meant to be, the America, our forefathers died for. It is gone. We have even sold American soild, right here to foreign governments, and is giving our country to our enemies! China, will come to have its debt paid, and will take its new land!
    It is a sad day, when “we the people for the people, by the people”… has in fact been replaced by westernized “NAZI” style government! Think a bout the “nationalist party”! Wake up people, we no longer live in America…we are soon headed for Belfast, or Iran, North Korea, Chzeckslovakia, Lennon ruled Russia!!!!
    RIP U.S.A. !!!!!!!!!!!!!

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