Friday, May 5, 2017

Patricia Herrmann's letter to Congressman Peter Roskam this morning

My little brother died in 1955 at age 3 of the congenital birth defects probably caused by rubella.  If he had lived he would have had many preexisting conditions.  After I began teaching in the western suburbs of Illinois, I taught in a school where many other districts sent their special education children at the time for schooling.  I had a whole class of 10-11-12 year old students who were all partially sighted, partial hearing, and had heart defects from rubella.  They lived because their defects were not as severe as my little brothers.  If they were still alive today, they would be about 60 years old, the loved siblings, children of loving parents, and valued members of their communities.  They all would have devastating preexisting conditions.  They would be more likely to survive if they lived in Canada, the UK, or any other advanced country other than the United States.  And your vote yesterday took us backwards away from health care for people like them.

Stephen Hawking who has ALS and is a great thinker, once said he is alive only because of the National Health Service in the UK.  So true.  In the UK, every life matters because it is a human being.  Not in the USA where only the lives of millionaires and billionaires count because they can buy off the Republican Party.  You sold our privacy to the telecoms for only $33,000.  It was pennies/citizen in your district.

I am a retired teacher now.  But as I look back, I am proud of our country for educating every child who appeared at the door if they were residents.  And I think our country needs to provide medical care for every human being as well.  We need Medicare for All of our citizens.  No family should have to fear for the lives of their loved ones who happen to have disabling conditions like rubella.

Later than 1970, the USA lined up every child in a school and gave every child a vaccination against rubella.  This wiped out the disease and the congenital conditions since then.  I am proud of the USA for taking this action to prevent the disease in future children.  Would we do this today?  Zika virus?  Or would we let the selfishness inherent in the AHCA vote prevail?

-Patricia Herrmann
Alan Sickels (April 3, 1952 - January 1, 1955)


  1. The 217 Republicans who voted for the egregious healthcare bill:

    Ralph Abraham, La.
    Robert B. Aderholt, Ala.
    Rick Allen, Ga.
    Justin Amash, Mich.
    Mark Amodei, Nev.
    Jodey Arrington, Tex.
    Brian Babin, Tex.
    Don Bacon, Neb.
    Jim Banks, Ind.
    Lou Barletta, Pa.
    Garland "Andy" Barr, Ky.
    Joe Barton, Tex.
    Jack Bergman, Mich.
    Gus M. Bilirakis, Fla.
    Mike Bishop, Mich.
    Rob Bishop, Utah
    Diane Black, Tenn.
    Marsha Blackburn, Tenn.
    Rod Blum, Iowa
    Mike Bost, Ill.
    Kevin Brady, Tex.
    Dave Brat, Va.
    Jim Bridenstine, Okla.
    Mo Brooks, Ala.
    Susan Brooks, Ind.
    Vern Buchanan, Fla.
    Ken Buck, Colo.
    Larry Bucshon, Ind.
    Ted Budd, N.C.
    Michael C. Burgess, Tex.
    Bradley Byrne, Ala.
    Ken Calvert, Calif.
    Earl L. "Buddy" Carter, Ga.
    John Carter, Tex.
    Steve Chabot, Ohio
    Jason Chaffetz, Utah
    Liz Cheney, Wyo.
    Tom Cole, Okla.
    Chris Collins, N.Y.
    Douglas A. Collins, Ga.
    James Comer, Ky.
    K. Michael Conaway, Tex.
    Paul Cook, Calif.
    Kevin Cramer, N.D.
    Eric A. "Rick" Crawford, Ark.
    John Abney Culberson, Tex.
    Carlos Curbelo, Fla.
    Warren Davidson, Ohio
    Rodney Davis, Ill.
    Jeff Denham, Calif.
    Ron DeSantis, Fla.
    Scott DesJarlais, Tenn.
    Mario Diaz-Balart, Fla.
    Sean P. Duffy, Wis.
    Jeff Duncan, S.C.
    John J. Duncan Jr., Tenn.
    Neal Dunn, Fla.
    Tom Emmer, Minn.
    Blake Farenthold, Tex.
    John Faso, N.Y.
    Drew Ferguson, Ga.
    Charles J. "Chuck" Fleischmann, Tenn.
    Bill Flores, Tex.
    Jeff Fortenberry, Neb.
    Virginia Foxx, N.C.
    Trent Franks, Ariz.
    Rodney Frelinghuysen, N.J.
    Matt Gaetz, Fla.
    Mike Gallagher, Wis.
    Thomas Garrett, Va.
    Bob Gibbs, Ohio
    Louie Gohmert, Tex.
    Bob Goodlatte, Va.
    Paul A. Gosar, Ariz.
    Trey Gowdy, S.C.
    Kay Granger, Tex.
    Garret Graves, La.
    Sam Graves, Mo.
    Tom Graves, Ga.
    H. Morgan Griffith, Va.
    Glenn Grothman, Wis.
    Brett Guthrie, Ky.
    Gregg Harper, Miss.
    Andy Harris, Md.
    Vicky Hartzler, Mo.
    Jeb Hensarling, Tex.
    Jody Hice, Ga.
    Clay Higgins, La.
    French Hill, Ark.
    George Holding, N.C.
    Trey Hollingsworth, Ind.
    Richard Hudson, N.C.
    Bill Huizenga, Mich.
    Randy Hultgren, Ill.
    Duncan D. Hunter, Calif.
    Darrell Issa, Calif.
    Evan Jenkins, W.Va.
    Lynn Jenkins, Kan.
    Bill Johnson, Ohio
    Mike Johnson, La.
    Sam Johnson, Tex.
    Jim Jordan, Ohio
    Mike Kelly, Pa.
    Trent Kelly, Miss.
    Peter T. King, N.Y.
    Steve King, Iowa
    Adam Kinzinger, Ill.
    Steve Knight, Calif.
    David Kustoff, Tenn.
    Raúl R. Labrador, Idaho
    Darin LaHood, Ill.
    Doug LaMalfa, Calif.
    Doug Lamborn, Colo.
    Robert E. Latta, Ohio
    Jason Lewis, Minn.
    Billy Long, Mo.
    Barry Loudermilk, Ga.
    Mia Love, Utah
    Frank D. Lucas, Okla.
    Blaine Luetkemeyer, Mo.

  2. The 217 Republicans who voted for the egregious healthcare bill:

    Tom MacArthur, N.J.
    Kenny Marchant, Tex.
    Tom Marino, Pa.
    Roger Marshall, Kan.
    Brian Mast, Fla.
    Kevin McCarthy, Calif.
    Michael McCaul, Tex.
    Tom McClintock, Calif.
    Patrick T. McHenry, N.C.
    David B. McKinley, W.Va.
    Cathy McMorris Rodgers, Wash.
    Martha McSally, Ariz.
    Mark Meadows, N.C.
    Luke Messer, Ind.
    Paul Mitchell, Mich.
    John Moolenaar, Mich.
    Alex Mooney, W.Va.
    Markwayne Mullin, Okla.
    Tim Murphy, Pa.
    Kristi L. Noem, S.D.
    Devin Nunes, Calif.
    Pete Olson, Tex.
    Steven M. Palazzo, Miss.
    Gary Palmer, Ala.
    Erik Paulsen, Minn.
    Stevan Pearce, N.M.
    Scott Perry, Pa.
    Robert Pittenger, N.C.
    Ted Poe, Tex.
    Bruce Poliquin, Maine
    Mike Pompeo, Kan.
    Bill Posey, Fla.
    John Ratcliffe, Tex.
    Tom Reed, N.Y.
    James B. Renacci, Ohio
    Tom Rice, S.C.
    Martha Roby, Ala.
    Phil Roe, Tenn.
    Harold Rogers, Ky.
    Mike D. Rogers, Ala.
    Dana Rohrabacher, Calif.
    Todd Rokita, Ind.
    Francis Rooney, Fla.
    Thomas J. Rooney, Fla.
    Peter J. Roskam, Ill.
    Dennis A. Ross, Fla.
    Keith Rothfus, Pa.
    David Rouzer, N.C.
    Edward R. Royce, Calif.
    Steve Russell, Okla.
    John Rutherford, Fla.
    Paul D. Ryan, Wis.
    Mark Sanford, S.C.
    Steve Scalise, La.
    David Schweikert, Ariz.
    Austin Scott, Ga.
    F. James Jr. Sensenbrenner, Wis.
    Pete Sessions, Tex.
    John Shimkus, Ill.
    Bill Shuster, Pa.
    Mike Simpson, Idaho
    Adrian Smith, Neb.
    Jason T. Smith, Mo.
    Lamar Smith, Tex.
    Lloyd Smucker, Pa.
    Elise Stefanik, N.Y.
    Chris Stewart, Utah
    Steve Stivers, Ohio
    Scott W. Taylor, Va.
    Claudia Tenney, N.Y.
    Glenn Thompson, Pa.
    Mac Thornberry, Tex.
    Patrick J. Tiberi, Ohio
    Scott R. Tipton, Colo.
    Dave Trott, Mich.
    Fred Upton, Mich.
    David Valadao, Calif.
    Ann Wagner, Mo.
    Tim Walberg, Mich.
    Greg Walden, Ore.
    Mark Walker, N.C.
    Jackie Walorski, Ind.
    Mimi Walters, Calif.
    Randy Weber, Tex.
    Daniel Webster, Fla.
    Brad Wenstrup, Ohio
    Bruce Westerman, Ark.
    Roger Williams, Tex.
    Joe Wilson, S.C.
    Rob Wittman, Va.
    Steve Womack, Ark.
    Rob Woodall, Ga.
    Kevin Yoder, Kan.
    Ted Yoho, Fla.
    David Young, Iowa
    Don Young, Alaska
    Lee Zeldin, N.Y.

  3. "...[T]he repeated efforts by the Republican Party to repeal the minimal protections offered by the Affordable Care Act serve to remind us that conservatism is a type of socially motivated cognition that minimizes any sense of human obligation and connection to other people, outside a narrowly defined kin or other peer group.

    "Today’s version of American conservatism is also a celebration of selfishness — and a belief that true freedom and liberty are based on a perverse individualism with little sense of common decency or linked fate with someone’s fellow citizens.

    "Today’s American conservatism also embraces an extreme form of neo-liberalism whereby human worth and dignity are determined by profit-and-loss statements and capitalism and democracy are confused with one another. Ultimately, American conservatism is a value system that is antisocial, anti-democratic and anti-freedom.

    "There is a moral obligation to speak plainly and directly in a time of crisis. To wit: The Republican Party’s so-called health care reform is designed to kill, injure and bankrupt the poor, the sick and the weak, in order to line the pockets of the 1 percent. As Republicans have repeatedly shown, the supposed 'party of life' is actually the 'party of death.'

    "It is long overdue that the American people begin to use this more accurate language to describe the Republican Party, Donald Trump and the right-wing voters who support them. The debate about 'repealing and replacing' the Affordable Care Act is not about normal political disagreement or budgetary priorities. It is about who should live and who should die and whether that should reflect how much money you have in your bank account" (The “pro-life” party has become the party of death: New research on why Republicans hate poor and sick people, Salon, May 4th).