Why I lose sleep every January and February
A while ago, I got into a bit of a “discussion” on facebook. It all began when my friend started a thread on his wall. It got me a bit frustrated, but I debated whether or not I should respond, because it was started by a good friend. In the end, I did. I said, “Rhetoric like this is what makes me lose sleep every winter when the Utah state legislature meets.” He asked me to clarify that. I did, and others joined in.
What followed was a discussion that I’ve had a number of times when I get on this topic with the conservatives that are so plentiful out here in Utah. It goes basically like this.
- They: The government shouldn’t be responsible for taking care of people, they should take care of themselves!
- Me: So, you’re saying that the government shouldn’t help us pay Jacob’s medical bills? You mean we should pay what would amount to literally over $7,000 a month ourselves?
- They: You pay that much?
- Me: No, but we would have to if we didn’t have help from government programs. Jacob’s life literally depends on government programs.
- They: Well, of course, the government should help people like you, they just shouldn’t help people who are leeching off welfare.
- Me: But when the representatives in the legislature talk, they don’t make any distinctions. They just talk about cutting funding. That makes me lose sleep.
- They: Well, conservatives wouldn’t cut funding for the disabled. Some government programs are necessary.
- Me: Whatever you say...
So, today, I got this email from a group that sits in on legislative committee meetings and reports on them to those in the disability community. It said:
“The Social Services Appropriations Joint Sub-Committee voted on a base budget this morning that eliminates or reduces programs that impact people receiving services through DSPD (Division of Services for People with Disabilities)...” The letter went on to enumerate the items in the DSPD budget that were being cut and gutted.
Fortunately, this is just a subcommittee meeting, and there is much lobbying that can (and in my opinion must) be done to prevent that.
There are a few arguments that I’ve had on the ‘net where I would sincerely wish I would lose. This, unfortunately, is one of them. I’d gladly wish that I were wrong if it would help me sleep better.
Mark has a lifelong testimony of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (the Mormon Church). Mark also has other sites and blogs, including MarkHansenMusic.com and his Dutch Oven blog.