Here Comes Trouble: Stories from My Life

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Donna Smith

Donna Smith, American SiCKO, is executive director of the Health Care for All Colorado Foundation

August 8th, 2011 4:48 PM

Making Ourselves Sick with Their Worry? Not Any More

For some time now, my disabled and retired machinist husband has watched with amusement when stock markets crash and rebound and broad financial indicators stutter and stammer.  He has lived a lifetime of economic stress and difficulty and never once has he seen his personal wealth or lack thereof be of any great concern for those who trade and win and lose large sums of money in our world.  I have often pushed him to worry with me and others about the details of our crisis de jour. He remains unmoved – though moderately amused and entertained at times.  I fret.
I cannot repeat here verbatim what my husband says about many of the wealthy who want my fretting to be transformed into my panic.  Suffice to say, he is watching for more signs of their suffering and the demise of their hedonistic ways of strip-mining this nation.  He thinks that until 123 or more of them are dying every day simply because they lack the money or other financial backing to save themselves they won’t really appreciate what he and millions of others have endured – just as 123 working class and poor Americans die every die without access to healthcare that might have saved them if only they had the money or if we had a progressively financed single-standard of care for all.
Is this vengeance on his part?  I would say it’s wanting a bit of justice; he would say he doesn’t care what you call it.
So when his call came to me this morning checking to see if any of the people I know were upset and expressing their upset about the stock market’s latest bumps, I wasn’t surprised.  He doesn’t isolate his disdain for those who are actually living and working on Wall Street.  He casts a wide net and throws it over all those who profit off the pain of others and then expect those they have harmed to fight to be harmed even more.
At times in ours lives, I have been frustrated and even angry about my husband’s stoic position.  Didn’t he get it, I wondered, that if the market tanks and people lose great portions of their wealth that we’ll all suffer?  He gets that.  He thinks he’s suffering now, his community and his family have suffered even when the wealthy and powerful get everything they desire and more.  I get angry and think he’s being foolish and that more pain will not mean anyone cares more later on or changes policy.  He says he gets that too.
But he just wants those who have done so much damage to so many people for so long to pay for what they have done.  He will not be moved.
He watched this video silently and said it was pretty powerful.  That was high praise from my husband. Seems the nurses will not be moved either.
Spread the word and share the video.  We have to stand together against those who would do us more harm.  Because the one thing my husband has taught me in his stubborn defiance of those who abuse the working class is that it takes courage and a willingness to stand alone – and the knowledge that you probably will stand alone at first as you defy the powers that be.  That courage and willingness to stand alone can be as contagious as fear often is – so stand up.  You are not alone – the nurses on Main Street have your back.

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