Monday, January 25, 2016

Killing us harshly: A Republican specialty

While I read about the experiences of people living in Flint, Michigan, whose children have been poisoned as a result of policies instituted by Michigan’s Republican Gov. Rick Snyder and his administration, my husband was playing a song by Roberta Flack. As the lyrics flowed around me “…killing me softly with his song ...” they turned into a dirge in my head, and I couldn’t help but think of all the examples of Republican legislation that is killing people for real. 
The “death panels” were hyped by Sarah Palin in an effort to target the Affordable Care Act (ACA). For her fictional exploits, she was awarded “lie of the year” by Politifact in 2009. But her lie was pointing at Democrats, when in actuality it is the Republican Party—ostensibly the “pro-life” group—who sow death and destruction.
Republican governors, Republican-controlled legislatures across the nation, and Republicans in Congress vote to attempt to ensure that certain Americans will go without health care, food, affordable and adequate housing, and safe neighborhoods. They legislate so that certain Americans will die in the death chamber, drink unclean water, breathe dirty air, and shoot themselves and and their neighbors with guns.
They embrace war, and scorn peace. Turning their backs on climate change, and embracing denial—they kill the planet.
They are killing us harshly.
“The denial of Medicaid expansion is a form of political and social violence. People are literally dying who don't have to die, simply because extremists in the legislatures and governor's mansions across the South and even here in North Carolina refuse to expand Medicaid, which is morally indefensible," state NAACP President Rev. William Barber said in a statement.
Voter suppression enables Republicans to enact and maintain their deadly policies.
In 2016, 10 states will be putting into place restrictive voting laws that they will be enforcing for the first time in a presidential election. These laws range from new hurdles to registration to cutbacks on early voting to strict voter identification requirements.  Collectively, these ten states are home to over 80 million people and will wield 129 of the 270 electoral votes necessary to win the presidency.
The same way that Moral Mondays reclaimed the high ground from the right-wing “Moral Majority,” Democrats need to reclaim the concept of being pro-life.
Because the reality is, we are pro-life.  
And death is the specialty of Republicans. 
in respect to and for the author Denise Oliver Velez,  "TOUCHE'"

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