Call health care what it is…a human right.

Today’s fabulous resource is an article from 2009 about reframing the the healthcare debate into what it has always been – an issue of human rights. Even as our rights to clean water and air are being wrenched away from us, let’s take back part of our history, the language of justice, human dignity and equality which makes us proud to be Americans.

This isn’t the first time we’ve fought for this.

“January 9, 1941, President Franklin D. Roosevelt gave his Four Freedoms speech, articulating the relationship between socio-economic rights and freedom. He declared “freedom from want” to be one of four essential liberties necessary for human security.

“…For there is nothing mysterious about the foundations of a healthy and strong democracy. The basic things expected by our people of their political and economic systems are simple. They are:
Equality of opportunity for youth and for others.
Jobs for those who can work.
Security for those who need it.
The ending of special privilege for the few.
The preservation of civil liberties for all.
The enjoyment of the fruits of scientific progress in a wider and constantly rising standard of living.
These are the simple, the basic things that must never be lost sight of in the turmoil and unbelievable complexity of our modern world. The inner and abiding strength of our economic and political systems is dependent upon the degree to which they fulfill these expectations. Many subjects connected with our social economy call for immediate improvement. As examples:
We should bring more citizens under the coverage of old-age pensions and unemployment insurance.
We should widen the opportunities for adequate medical care…”

(Here’s a brief history of universal health care in the US, including the reasons FDR wasn’t able to complete his vision. Truman got closer.)

The GOP has been using terms like “market-based”, “universal access” and “skin-in-the-game” to cover their real intentions. “It’s a massive transfer of wealth from middle-class and poor families to the richest people in America.” says former President Obama.  “It hands enormous tax cuts to the rich and to the drug and insurance industries, paid for by cutting health care for everybody else.”

So let’s not argue with them with their terms, as they are dishonest and essentially meaningless.

Let’s call our senators instead…

Now that doctors are on our side (see the historical links above) and the only red scare is coming from our own President, let’s reframe our dialogue about health care into what it really is. So when you call your senators, pick any of the short scripts below or make up your own, and add in that health care is a basic human right and essential for human dignity, justice and equality.


General healthcare calling scripts, how to make calls when you really hate calling, and definitions of terms here.

Medicaid script here.

Planned Parenthood defense scripts here.

Get your friends and family in states with senators that have important votes to call here.

Prevention and Public Health Fund script here.



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