Sunday, October 30, 2011

Marcelas Owens: 11 Year Old Activist

Marcelas Owens gets a pat from Vice President Joe Biden as President  Barack Obama  signs the health care reform. 
 “Health care is not a privilege, it’s a right,” Owens said. Marcelas Owens proves that you are never too young to become involved with something that you care so deeply about. On March 10, 2010, Marcelas Owens, an 11-year-old from Seattle, was the star of a press conference with Senate Democratic leadership. He did not let his youth interfere with his confidence as he told a room full of reporters, “…I want Barack Obama and Congress and everybody to come together and to help get the health care bill passed.” Next, Marcus told the room his personal story and how he has had to face hardships in losing his mother because of the harshly expensive health care in the United States. “I am here because of my mom," explains Owens. “My mom was diagnosed with pulmonary hypertension in 2006. She missed so much work she lost her job. And when my mom lost her job, she lost her health care. And losing her health care ended up costing her her life.”  When asked of his reasons for promoting a health care reform he states, “I don’t want any other kids to go through the pain that our family has gone through. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid agrees with Owens and continues to say that Marcelas’s story confirms in blatant terms why the country needs this health insurance form. Harry Reid says, “When she lost her job, she lost her health insurance. Because she lost her health insurance, she lost her life.”
Twelve days later, Marcelas happened to get a call from the White House. Then, that night he took the red-eye flight to Washington D.C. On March 23, 2010, Marcelas’s dreams came true as he stood by President Barack Obama’s side as he signed the health care reform into law. President Obama told the audience that he was signing the heal care reform in honor of Marcelas’s mother and in memory of her life here on earth. The health care reform makes health care more affordable, holds insurers accountable, and expands coverage to all Americans.  Today, the health care bill has expanded coverage to over 32 million Americans.
 Works Cited
Delaney, Arthur. "Marcelas Owens, 11-Year-Old Whose Mother Died Without Health Insurance: 'Get The Health Care Bill Passed'" Breaking News and Opinion on The Huffington Post. Huffington Post News, 11 Mar. 2010. Web. 31 Oct. 2011. 
Guzman, Monica. "Marcelas Owens’ Big Day: Seattle Boy Spent It with Obama" Blogs - Hearst Seattle Media, 23 Mar. 2010. Web. 31 Oct. 2011. 
Kahn, Huma. " - Breaking News, Politics, Online News, World News, Feature Stories, Celebrity Interviews and More - ABC News." Daily News, Breaking News and Video Broadcasts - ABC News. ABC News, 22 Mar. 2010. Web. 31 Oct. 2011. 

Sunday, October 23, 2011

The Crisis of American Health Care

Possessing skillful doctors, advanced medicines, and state of the art equipment, the United States claims that there healthcare industry ranks among the best. Healthcare is the maintenance and improvement of physical and mental health, especially through the provision of medical services, such as doctors and nurses. The American healthcare system outspends all other countries on health per person. However, the people of the United States people receive a lower level of care than do the citizens of many countries that spend less on their healthcare systems. Many of the elderly and poor people receive healthcare through government organizations. Medicare, a government organization, reimburses hospitals and physicians for medical care provided to qualifying people over 65 years old. Another organization, Medicaid, that reimburses hospitals and physicians for providing care to qualifying people who cannot finance their own medical expenses. Sixty percent of Americans have coverage through employment based health insurances. Health insurance is insurance against expenses acquired through illness of the insured, for example if a person breaks their leg the majority of the medical bill would be covered and the person would only have to pay a fraction of the bill as a deductible. Yet, 47 million Americans are uninsured, which would mean they would have to pay the entire medical bill if for example they broke their leg. On the other hand, the rising costs of individual health care and the price of maintaining the government organizations dedicated to providing healthcare to the poor and elderly has put a strain on the economy of the United States. Peter R. Orszag, an American economist, states, “It is no exaggeration to say that the United States' standing in the world depends on its success in constraining this health-care cost explosion; unless it does, the country will eventually face a severe fiscal crisis or a crippling inability to invest in other areas.” Orszag’s comment has somewhat become true because state governments have had to divert funds from education to health care. He believes that the only solution to the increasing health is, "there is no credible path to reducing the long-term fiscal imbalance in the United States other than directly addressing high-cost cases in health care." 

Works Cited 

Orszag, Peter R. "How Health Care Can Save or Sink America.Foreign Affairs. Jul/Aug 2011: 42. SIRS Issues Researcher. Web. 23 Oct 2011.
ProQuest Staff. "Topic Overview: Health Care.ProQuest LLC. 2011: n.pag. SIRS Issues Researcher. Web. 23 Oct 2011.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Immigration: Our Wants Vs. Their Needs

Who exactly is an immigrant?
An immigrant is a foreign-born person who has been allowed to live permanently in the United States as a Lawful Permanent Resident (LPR), according to the United States law. An undocumented immigrant is an individual who illegally resides in the United States without the permission of the American government.

How does an Immigrant obtain permission to reside in the United States?
Normally, there are three ways an immigrant can become a LPR. First, an American citizen can sponsor their foreign-born family member through family-sponsored immigration. Secondly, in the course of employment-based immigration, a U.S. employer can sponsor a person for a particular job, only when there is a lack of availability of American workers. Lastly, an immigrant can win a visa in the yearly diversity visa lottery.

Myths about Immigrants that lead to Injustice
Currently, there are many myths circulating around the United States about the negative affect immigration can have on our country. For example, a popular myth among American citizens is that immigrants do not want to learn English. Even thought the first generation of immigrants may have a hard time learning a new, complex language, the second and third generations of immigrants can speak English fluently. Also, many Americans allege that immigrants, especially undocumented immigrants, do not pay taxes. This statement is in fact false because immigrants, including undocumented ones, pay both state and federal taxes. In addition, immigrants contribute to Medicare and provide about seven billion dollars a year to the Social Security Fund, which benefits Americans. Lastly, Americans believe that immigrants have increased the crime rate of the United States. However, recent research has shown that immigrant communities have committed fewer crimes than American citizens. Actually, violent crime decreased by 34% even though the number of undocumented immigrants has doubled.

The Catholic Church’s View on Immigration
            The Church is obligated to raise her voice on behalf of the immigrants who have been marginalized, whose God-given human rights are not respected, and whose dignity is not fully able to function as a human being. Also, the Church believes that today’s immigration policies not only demoralize the immigrants’ human dignity, but have separated many families. The Church strives to create an immigration system that serves for the common good, for both the immigrants and the United States. 

Works Cited
"Facts and Figures." Justice for Immigrants. United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, 22 Aug. 2005. Web. 17 Oct. 2011. Print.