• Health care is a human right
    December 07,2012

    Health care is a human right

    In a column Nov. 24, Rep. Heidi E. Scheuermann of Stowe proposes that the Republican Party needs to reinvent itself. She said, “We need thoughtful, intelligent debate on the proposals put forward by others, yet instead of intelligent opposition, we sound lifeless and uninspiring — and sometimes idiotic, angry and petty.” She went on to say, “It is time that we join together to reinvigorate, reinstitute and revive the Republican Party in Vermont.”

    Scheuermann advocates in generalities (cares about Vermonters and their families, believes in liberty, protects our children’s welfare) of the kind that every single person of good conscience advocates, regardless of party. This is like being “against crime.” The principles have meaning only when you start to apply them to specific circumstances and issues.

    When she says that one of the Republican Party’s “traditional values” is “caring for those in need,” can she point to specifics?

    From what I understand, Scheuermann voted repeatedly against legislation that would create a universal health care system. Is this really an expression of caring about Vermonters and their families?

    These high-sounding generalities are in keeping with the abstract values espoused by Campaign for Vermont, of which she is a founding partner (along with Bruce Lisman). In the case of Campaign for Vermont, these principles appear to translate into the very typical Republican positions of, specifically, no universal health care, and generally, let the wonders of the free market solve all our problems.

    Unfortunately, the ideal of the free-market system has been valued by the Republican Party much more than the needs of Vermonters. Instead, health care needs to be a human right.

    Charlie Murphy


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